Beroean Pickets has another excellant article presented on their Website. It is written by Tadua. In light of the Russian ban there are many valid points made.
The organization has always fought fiercely for it's right to worship and have been able to establish those rights under various Governments. The article examines whether the rights they fight for are in fact requirement of true worship.
Gods Kingdom Rules (kr chp. 15 par. 1-8) – Fighting for Freedom to Worship
It is true that worship involves more than what one believes. But does worship actually require the things that the organization has fought for. The area covered this week is the right to exist as an organization and to meet at kingdom halls and assembly halls, and distribute literature.
So we have to ask, are these things a necessary part of worship in the scriptures or is it again an organizational requirement?
One item that stood out in these paragraphs was the fight to be able to print and distribute Bible literature. Did the early Christians suffer bans on bible literature? This doesn’t seem to have been an issue. Indeed they did not use literature, they only relied on the Hebrew Scriptures and the Gospels and Letters of Paul and the other apostles as they became available.
So why the need today, especially when we have the whole Bible readily available? Could it be that either deliberately or not, more weight is being given to the teachings in the literature than those taken directly from God’s word? Also is the good news being made unnecessarily complicated as a result, so that the simple clarity that the early disciples preached so successfully has been lost? There are no scriptures to support the right to distribute Bible literature.
What about meeting at kingdom halls and assembly halls? Again there is no scriptural requirement for these. True, the Bible does talk about not forsaking the gathering of ourselves together. (Hebrews 10:24, 25) However, this scripture does not mandate the gathering together in meeting halls. The early Christians met in private homes.
Finally what about the right to exist as an organization? Again, there is no scriptural requirement for an organization, and as mentioned on previous occasions, the word ‘organization’ does not appear in the scriptures. Even the use of ‘association of brothers’ does not qualify as an organized official body. The normal use of the word association is ‘a connection or co-operative link between people or organizations.’ As they were brothers they had a co-operative link between them. To use the word association to prove existence of an organization is disingenuous at best. The Greek word used in 1 Peter 2:17 is adelphotes which means ‘brotherhood’, ‘band of brothers’, which implies an informal group of friends or brothers with the same interests.
So the brothers are fighting in the courts for things which are Organizational requirements, not Scriptural necessities.
Additionally, while these rights have been fought for and established in law in many countries, there has been no effort to fight for these rights in outright Muslim countries, and extreme Communist countries. Other arrangements have been made for these countries. So we ask, was the fight really necessary? Surely if it is necessary for ‘Western lands’ it is also necessary for Muslim and communist lands, and vice-versa. Is Jehovah’s hand short, or does he simply not require such things at all?
When we read paragraph 8, we can only ask how do the witnesses in Russia feel about being under ban yet again in the year of 2017? We would want to have empathy for the witnesses as individuals, but once again it appears that to some extent it has been either unnecessarily provoked or at least incurred, in part due to the unscriptural rules they enforce, such as the policy of complete shunning of disassociated and disfellowshipped ones until reinstatement takes place.