Sheep and the Goats - The Light Gets Brighter

by nmthinker 41 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • neverendingjourney

    I read this article with interest back when it was released. I wasn't baptized yet, but I had recently embraced the religion I was brought up in and read every magazine as soon as it arrived in the mail.

    For me it was incredibly exciting. New light! I couldn't wait to tell everyone at the KH, but the response I received was surprising: lots of blank stares, abrasive and judgmental questioning, and people assuming I was stupid and misunderstood what I read. Not a single person had read the article.

    It turned out to be just the opening act. Two weeks later the following Watchtower contained the generation change and nobody seemed to pay any attention to the sheep and goats change anymore. Kind of got buried by the follow-up.

  • TheWonderofYou

    Shepherd, Sheep & Goats
    by Rev. Ed Visser

    "The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lay down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake." Psalm 23:1-3

    We were traveling through the Judean desert toward Jerusalem when we saw it. Coming over one of the many hills, we spotted this pastoral scene, of which I quickly snapped a picture. It’s a typical scene in the land, a bedouin shepherd leading his sheep and goats to food. And yet, the scene before us was atypical of the images we hold in our mind when we read passages like Psalm 23. Admit it! You probably don’t envision “green pastures” that look like sand dunes (where’s the green?).

    After all, what’s more like real life? God plopping you down in a field of lush grass, giving you everything you need for your lifetime? Or God leading you, day-by-day, to little tufts of grass, just enough to get you through the day but demanding that you trust him for the next day (“give us this day our daily bread”)?

    What’s more like real life? God showing you a nicely paved path and reminding you not to stray off it? Or God leading you, in the midst of a maze of different paths you could choose, down the path that will allow you to live rightly and find sustenance for life (rather than the edge of a cliff)?

    You will notice that the shepherd is out in front of his flock — leading them, not driving them like cattle. God wants our relationship with Him to be one of hearing his voice & following, RATHER THAN HAVING TO BE "DRIVEN" TO HEAR AND OBEY. [bold mine ]. True sheep, as Jesus notes in John 10, hear his voice and follow.

    But sometimes we don’t follow; we go our own way. What then? Well, Jesus reminds us that a good shepherd will go out to seek and save his lost sheep, for they are precious to him. But there are limits; there will be a time when sheep & goats will be separated, and different fate will await them both. Why did Jesus differentiate between these two types of flocks? After all, in Israel you generally see sheep & goats grazing together. But look closely at this picture. The group of animals in a neat circle nearest the shepherd are sheep; the rest scattered on the hillside are goats. Apparently this is common, for while sheep are good followers, goats often have a mind of their own. Goats have an independent streak which causes them to stray.

    Do we?

    ..... and how does a good shepard lead?

  • LisaRose

    they give financial contributions and help to build Kingdom Halls, Assembly Halls, and branch facilitie

    I wonder if anybody ever questions why they need to keep contributing and helping to build Kingdom Halls, Assembly Halls and Branch facilities when there is almost no growth and in fact they are selling off many branch facilities?

    You have to be truly be sheep like to not notice you are totally being fleeced.

  • Simon

    Wow, their linking people being "sheep-like" with giving them money is blatant and appalling. They really are turning into the cheap and grubby TV evangelist types who promise salvation via credit card payments!

  • Muddy Waters
    Muddy Waters

    When I first left this crap religion, I started reading the bible on its own, from all kinds of translations and revisions.... and I was amazed at reading so many verses that I'd never read or heard about before. I started with the New Testament and couldn't believe how many verses there were that spoke about charity, and giving to others, and being kind and gracious and showing grace, and GIVING TO THE THE POOR and materially helping people.... I kept a list somewhere of all these verses, but it has now been years since I've even wanted to read a bible again, and the list is long gone.

    But I remember being amazed and dumbfounded at what it was like to read the bible without the WT lens, and to discover so many verses like this, that were never highlighted or given as examples for us to follow. They only select a few verses, repeated over and over and over and over, all which conform (or they make them conform!) to their agenda.

  • Vidiot

    Shepherds, wolves...

    ...either way, the sheep gets eaten.

    At least the goats are kept alive for their milk.

  • eyeuse2badub

    How much money does one need to contribute to be a sheep?

    just asking!

  • TheFadingAlbatros

    The light gets brighter in this cult made in USA the same way as its hypocrisy becomes more obvious every new coming day.

  • TheWonderofYou

    I was surprised what appeared at 3:00. Its somehow nice.

  • Fisherman

    how the judging of the sheep and the goats pivoted from mankind as a whole to a focus exclusively on JW's.

    The article that you refer to does not say that but something that you have concluded on your own.

    According to this new light, those who are sheep are those who support Christ's brothers, either by preaching or,...Logically then, the parable cannot be directed to the world as a whole, as they do not even know who Christ's Brothers

    Again, the logic is all yours. Note the parable that is being discussed in the article.

    31 “When the Son of man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit down on his glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another, just as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 And he will put the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on his left.
    34 “Then the King will say to those on his right: ‘Come, you who have been blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the founding of the world. 35 For I became hungry and you gave me something to eat; I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink. I was a stranger and you received me hospitably; 36 naked and you clothed me. I fell sick and you looked after me. I was in prison and you visited me.’ 37 Then the righteous ones will answer him with the words: ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and receive you hospitably, or naked and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ 40 In reply the King will say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’
    41 “Then he will say to those on his left: ‘Go away from me, you who have been cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the Devil and his angels. 42 For I became hungry, but you gave me nothing to eat; and I was thirsty, but you gave me nothing to drink. 43 I was a stranger, but you did not receive me hospitably; naked, but you did not clothe me; sick and in prison, but you did not look after me.’ 44 Then they too will answer with the words: ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison and did not minister to you?’ 45 Then he will answer them, saying: ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did not do it to one of these least ones, you did not do it to me.’ 46 These will depart into everlasting cutting-off, but the righteous ones into everlasting life.”

    See, it applies to non JW too. spiritual blindness is no excuse. (Assuming that "sheep" means JW kingdom supporters.)

    But credit to you relating this article.

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