Remembering Rutherford

by Sea Breeze 156 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Disillusioned JW
    Disillusioned JW

    Rocketman123, where have they explicitly claimed to be a prophet? I have don't recall them ever making such a claim (unless they made the claim long before the year 1950) - and I looked extensively to see if they made such a claim. To my knowledge the closest they came (at least since the year 1950) to claiming to be a literal prophet is that they did say in a Watchtower (or an Awake!) article from the 1970s that Jehovah's witnesses are a ' "prophet" ' but they had the word "prophet" in quote marks, indicating that they were claiming to be like a prophet, instead of literally a prophet. By writing and publishing such though, admittedly they came very close to claiming to be an actual literal prophet.

    Since you say they claimed to be a prophet, I think that most likely you never were a JW, for JWs (and probably virtually all ex-JWs) don't believe they ever claimed to be literally a prophet.

    Probably most (or many) ministers of the churches and most scholarly Christian authors of commentaries on the Bible believe they are guided by God's holy spirit in what they say (and interpret) about the Bible (including biblical prophecies), yet they disagree in some of what they say among themselves (especially among people of different denominations). By your definition that would make them false prophets, but the majority of Christian people don't consider them to be such.

  • dropoffyourkeylee

    To me the objectionable thing that I can't get over is that the WT leadership believes that they and they alone are God's representative organization. If three elders sit across from you and ask, 'Do you believe the Watchtower Society is God's spirit directed organization?' and you say 'No', you can be disfellowshipped/disassociated. That is simply outrageous.

  • Rocketman123

    Since you say they claimed to be a prophet, I think that most likely you never were a JW,

    Oh f.. off I was a JWS from birth late 1950's. left permanently in the mid 1980's

    By the fact that they say / preach that Christ has returned to his heavenly throne in 1914 and that mankind is now living in the last days is quite clear that they are identifying themselves as prophets supposedly guided by god's holy spirit.

    They didn't adhere to Jesus's words when he said no one knows of the time not even even he and then admonished his followers to not set a time upon god's own sacred time.

    The very reason why most other Christian based faiths have not done what the WTS men have done.

    Why did the WTS men set a time and disregard Jesus's words is because they had literature to sell and lure in people to the organization where they too can financially contribute to the organization through money and labor.

    Share in the sins of those top controlling men in other words..

    Its quite obvious Rutherford was a charlatan whore who lived a rich lavish life off the WTS's proceeds.

    Now days the GB men share the wealth of those proceeds, such as building new modern technically expensive buildings complete with swimming pools and tennis courts.

    Get it ?

    DJW if your that much in denial and willing to white wash over the JWS , why dont get your suit on and get back, you'll get a pretentious conditional smile at the Kingdom Hall waiting for you but dont tell them you've been here discussing the faith or you wont.

  • DNCall
  • Disillusioned JW
    Disillusioned JW

    The WT didn't literally disregard Jesus' teaching of not knowing the "day and hour", since the WT craftily made predictions only of the year instead (though regarding the 1914 date it might have predicted the month also and maybe even the date of the month that the Gentile Times would end, but up to decades after the year 1914 the WT had been saying that Jesus had already returned in the 1870s and had already began ruling as king since the 1870s). But yes admittedly the words attributed to Jesus about the "day and hour" probably also apply to the year, especially if the words attributed to him are meant to apply to a time more than 1000 years after those words were first written.

    Thanks though for informing me that you were raised a JW, however I am puzzled. If you believed from before the 1980s that the WT claimed to be a prophet and since you knew they got so many things wrong, why did you stay with them for so long? But, maybe you never became baptized as one and if so, then you were never fully/technically a JW. To me you write like you are someone who was never baptized as a JW, even if you were raised by JW parents. That is why I wondered if you were ever a JW. Even your recent post containing the claim of being a JW "from birth" sounds like the way people in many churches speak about themselves (other than claiming to be a JW). Unlike many churches JWs (and baptists) never baptize infants and thus people are never JWs from birth, though many people have been raised in the JW religion since birth. Admittedly though many unbaptized young people think of themselves as JWs and admittedly I had thought of myself as already a JW even before I was baptized as one. I guess I will cut you some slack on that point.

    I had not read or heard that the WT now has buildings with swimming pools and tennis courts until reading your post (or if I did read such I hadn't given it much thought). In the mid or late 1990's an elder from my congregation told me that the governing body, even the President of the WT, take a vow of poverty and that their rooms at headquarters (Bethel) are only modest instead of lavish/expensive. I took his word to be true, especially since I hadn't found any proof to the opposite and since other JWs said that what I heard about the rooms of the governing body is true.

    DNCall, thanks for the link but in my prior post of this topic thread I addressed that WT issue's use of the word "prophet", drawing attention to it very carefully (perhaps even craftily) having the word "prophet" in quote marks and the significance of having it in quote marks. If the word hadn't been in quote marks, then definitely the WT would have been saying all Christian JWs (not just the GB and not just the so-called anointed ones) are prophets, or one collective prophet as a group/class.

  • Disillusioned JW
    Disillusioned JW

    minimus, I might continue to defend the WT organization on certain matters (even after doing extensive research on those matters, for my commitment is to that which I consider to be truthful, whether the information is pro-WT or anti-WT), but I also criticize them on certain other matters. For examples of the latter consider the following.

    I say they are wrong for believing that the Bible is the word of Jehovah God (or of any god), for I am convinced that no personal god exists (at least in relation to humans on Earth and even in regards to our universe). I disagree that blood transfusions (in which the donors of the blood are giving their consent to save human lives) are in conflict with the Bible's teaching. I disagree that Christ began ruling in 1914 (C.E./A.D.). I even disagree that Jesus Christ, or any supernatural Christ exists (however there have been those, and there might be those, who have received an anointing in a nonsupernatural sense). I believe it is wrong for the WT to have handled numerous quotes the way they did, even if I think I they believed they were justified to do so in that way. I intensely disapprove of their requiring JWs to believe everything the WT teaches on religious matters, knowing that the WT is a largely unreliable source for correct interpretations of the Bible (especially in regards to theology). I am appalled by their former use of Greber's NT 'translation' in support of the wordings of some of the verses in the NWT, especially considering that earlier they sharply condemned Greber's NT 'translation' as being as being inspired by the demons. [By the way, note my use of quote marks around the word "translation", thereby suggesting that I think Greber's book might not have been truly a translation of the NT.] I am appalled by their former status as an NGO of the UN, considering what they have said about the need to be no part of glorifying the UN and to be no part of the UN.

    I intend to soon post negative comments about some recent discoveries I made in Rutherford's books called Preparation, Enemies, Religion, and Children, and what they reveal (to me at least) about the WT organization, not just about what they reveal about Rutherford. During the past few days the more I study the WT's old books the more negative I am becoming about the character of the WT organization, at least in regards to it's governing body and its writing department. But even now I still find it hard to believe that those currently taking the lead (and those who have done so in the past) of the JW religion and those on its team of writers don't believe in most of the teachings of the religion (though I think they might disbelieve some of the teachings, otherwise it would be hard to explain why teachings and policies often change considerably when a new person joins the governing body).

    There is a difference in meaning for the phrase "false statement" and the word "lie". Some may make a false statement while believing it is a true statement. Someone doing so is being sincere and is thus not not lying, even if they are repeating the lie of someone else. But if one believes those people are lying then all people (other than those who don't speak and also don't write) are liars since we all have incorrect ideas and thus say incorrect things. A lie is false statement of specific type, namely one in which the person who told the false statement knew and/or believed/thought he/she was making a false statement and that it was done with the intention of deceiving (but not as a joke). [In a sense someone could even be lying while telling the truth if the person telling the truth thought he/she was telling a falsehood.] At least such has been my view since early childhood. From this view of mine it is very hard (at least for me) to know if someone is lying since it would require knowing if the person uttering the false statement knew he/she was uttering a false statement. Since I don't know the governing body members personally (nor the anonymous writers of the writing team) it is very hard for me to know if they are lying, instead of merely telling false statements which they sincerely consider to be true. However sometimes a person's (or an organization's) own literature will show he/she knew certain things to be true of which he/she later proclaimed the opposite to be true. It is granted though that people sometimes change their minds.

    I found online a history of the WT at . I have only read a small percentage of its content but what I have read of it seems to be very well researched and very accurate. It appears to have useful information about the WT's history (and Rutherford's history). I wonder what caused Jan Haugland to have enough interest in Rutherford and the WT to motivate him to write the article.

  • TD

    There are other ways to convey a thought besides the explicit statement thereof:

    The meaning of this picture is unmistakable. JW literature literally comes from God's hands to yours. This falls well within the JW definition of a prophet insofar as the organization that produces this literature is concerned.

  • Rocketman123

    however I am puzzled. If you believed from before the 1980s that the WT claimed to be a prophet and since you knew they got so many things wrong, why did you stay with them for so long?

    So your saying that people who were baptized and fully active as a JWS cant awake to new found information that slowly changes their thinking about what they have been taught or persuaded to preach door to door. ???

    Do you enjoy taking the piss out people ?

    Since I don't know the governing body members personally (nor the anonymous

    writers of the writing team) it is very hard for me to know if they are lying, instead

    of merely telling false statements.

    Ok I'll give you an example, the WTS made the proclamation through its literature that mankind existence has come to 6000 years. First used in the early 1900's by C Russell, then in 1941 by F Franz , then again by him in the late 1960's to established 1975, he even said October of that year.

    All these proclaimed dates were devised under a premise that mankind existence has come to 6000 years and therefore supposedly living in the last days and that a new era of 1000 years was to come.

    The problem with this dating is that its impossible to make that calculation, to a given month no less from bible chronological calculations.

    Bullshit lies in other words.

    It is assumed that C Russell got that from Pyramidology which he taught and preached, then people like F Franz reused it as a form of promotional strategy.

    DJW I've been on this forum for over 16 years with different user names, I've gathered a lot information about the WTS/JWS religion since then.

    Your just new, so you've got a lot to learn so stick around if you will.

  • TD
    I wonder what caused Jan Haugland to have enough interest in Rutherford and the WT to motivate him to write the article.

    Jan Haugland was a gung-ho JW years and years ago. It was through interaction with Alan Feuerbacher and others on the Friends mailing list (Around 1992) that he changed his mind.

    Jan has mostly broken with his JW past and is interested in other things today. (Who can blame him?)

    I would also add that there were pitched debates back then on what the use of the phrase, spirit direction actually meant in practical terms. Both gentleman regularly lambasted apologists who attempted to minimize the gravity of the claim.

  • Disillusioned JW
    Disillusioned JW

    Wow TD, that is an excellent point you made about the power of illustrations. It reminds me of something I saw yesterday which I planned to post about. See which has an illustration on page 138 of Rutherford's book called Preparation. A direct link to the illustration is at . It shows JWs (specifically of the anointed class?) inside of Christ's robe (I think) and appearing to be walking out of it (I think), with some standing outside of it. They are carrying books, probably WT books written by Rutherford. In at least one full color illustration in one of Rutherford's books the JWs (with the backing of Christ the king and of Jehovah) are holding up what are clearly books by Rutherford (of the so-called "rainbow" series due to the colors of the hardcovers). See . That illustration also depicts a portable phonograph player with a record on the player, presumably one of Rutherford's records. The pope depicted in the illustration has the tongue of a serpent (or other reptile) and as having his head sticking out of the mouth of a reptile (probably a serpent).

    Thanks for telling me about Jan Haugland.

    Rockeman123, I was not "... saying that people who were baptized and fully active as a JWS cant awake to new found information that slowly changes their thinking about what they have been taught or persuaded to preach door to door." I also was not trying to convey such. I just thought it would have been obvious to anyone who was raised from infancy as a JW starting from the late 1950s and continuing for about 20 years, that the WT had made numerous failed predictions and numerous doctrinal changes. I thought that if someone saw that and was also the type person to consider such as being evidence of being a false prophet, then they/he/she would have left the religion before the mid 1980s. But I now realize I was wrong about that, especially since the mid 1980s wasn't long after the year 1975.

    My perspective was different from yours. I was born after you, but even while a child in 1975 I knew of the WT's prediction about 1975 (including in regards to October) and when I got baptized years later (in the early 1980s) I also knew of some doctrinal changes. I knew of the latter because when the WT introduced a new doctrinal change they mentioned what the old doctrine was (at least partially). But I never thought of them as claiming to literally be a prophet (at least in anything they wrote from the 1950s onward), for the reasons I stated in other posts - though I thought about that idea carefully. However they did come as close as possible to claiming to literally be a prophet without going all the way of literally claiming to be a prophet, and perhaps that should be enough to condemn them (especially considering their policy regarding those whom they label as apostates for disagreeing with them). But I have a strong tendency to interpret statements literally and thus I didn't interpret them as claiming to be a prophet.

    The WT gave reasons for the month of October in regards to their 1914 and 1975 dates and for the month that the creative days were thought to begin in. I think one of the reasons had to do with calendars of a number ancient cultures (including that of the Hebrews?) starting in the fall (I think). It should be noted that long before Russell was born James Ussher said that the first day of creation was Sunday 23 October 4004 BC. See . He was wrong but his idea was very influential among fundamentalist-like creationist Christians.

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