Ruin those Ruining th Earth

by peacefulpete 52 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • iwantoutnow

    AH - just on thing... Its all MADE UP BULLSHIT - Fake - Fiction - Fairytales.

  • peacefulpete

    Many former JWs carry baggage of worry about a couple phrases years after they have separated from the church. I've seen it in person and on this forum. Lingering "what ifs" if you will. This single phrase lifted from context and only recently reinterpreted has haunted some former JWs this way. The power of indoctrination is real and only by confronting the facts straight on can we lose it's grip on us.

    Here we have a sectarian text written by a "John", which John we don't know for certain as there was differing opinions very early in church history. (John the elder, John the presbyter, some other John?). It took hundreds of years and lots of political clout to convince Christians as a whole to accept it as scripture. The work itself appears to be a piecework of a Jewish apocalyptic text, typical of the time, with a Christian overlay. The entire context was the end first century/early 2nd political struggles and expectations. It had no intended purpose for people living nearly 2000 years later.

    We might know all that but that one phrase lifted out of context and spun with modern concerns in mind can still haunt someone.... it's the power of indoctrination.

  • waton

    When I read that text the first time, happened to be in . the King James version, in 1957 ( "--destroy those--" it occurred to me that indeed an inspired writer had indeed in foresight predicted the coming of the nuclear age, and WoMD, and the creator of life would pay them back in kind ahead of time.

    I believed it referred ro warmongers. and their active supporters.

    re: pollution: in a million years from now, the stuff in our landfills, and that has sunk to the ocean bottoms will be mined and pumped out as coal, oil and gas for the next cycle of life.

  • Cadellin

    Witnesses like to apply it to ecological ruin, as if the Bible was predicting the environmental crisis we are currently in. However, the marginal reference in the NWT to Rev. 11:18 is to Gen. 6:11: 1 But the earth had become ruined in the sight of the true God, and the earth was filled with violence.

    So "ruined" refers to being ruined by violence, which aligns with the idea of "corrupt" or "corruption" as already mentioned and not with ecological ruination. The JW misinterpretation of Rev. 11:18 was one of the final straws that broke my publisher's back. The last time I was out in field service, I read that scripture at the door and recited the orthodoxy about how the Bible was predicting the ecological ruination we see around us, even though I knew that was an eisegetical error. My conscience killed me afterward and I thought to myself--never again.

  • blondie

    Watchtower polluting, please say it is not so!

    SHAWANGUNK — State authorities are overseeing the investigation of chemicals and debris that were found buried at Watchtower Farms.
    The state Department of Environmental Conservation said the pollution was found at three different sites on the 1,141-acre property. Each of the pollution sites covers roughly 2 acres.
    Matt Hubicki, a DEC environmental engineer, said hints of the contamination were found in 2007 while the Jehovah’s Witnesses organization was building an expansion.
    “They found some drums while digging the foundation for one of their residential facilities,” Hubicki said. The group immediately reported the drums to the DEC.
    An investigation found that several 55-gallon drums contained chemicals, including inks and solvents that were used at Watchtower’s printing press off Red Mills Road. The gigantic printing operation dates back to the 1970s, and it produces all the religious literature that the group distributes in North America.
    The drums contained benzene, xylene and other chemicals that have been shown to affect human health. Construction debris and polluted soil was also uncovered at the sites.
    DEC officials said it appears that Watchtower workers moved the toxic soil to these sites when printing chemicals spilled decades ago. Then they used farm machinery to aerate the soil and evaporate the contaminants.
    An investigation that began this month will determine the scope of the pollution and clean-up options. Watchtower will have to pay for the cleanup; the cost has not yet been determined. The site is currently enrolled in the state Brownfield Cleanup Program.
    [email protected]

  • Simon

    The WTS are opportunists - if it looks like they might have said something that could be interpreted as being "predictive" of something, they are smart enough to throw some scriptures on a page and claim success.

    I don't think the bible writers had any concept of man-made climate change, their "world" was local - it could be devastated with fire, flood, famine or invading armies. The idea that man could affect the entire planet would have been a fanciful notion.

    Revelation is an apocalyptic drug trip, all about supernatural events and politics and nothing todo with environmentalism.

    But there are definitely parallels between people's faith, belief in religious doctrines without evidence, and a cult-like belief in man-made apocalyptic climate change also without basis.

  • slimboyfat

    Okay here’s what I found. (I am writing this from memory, without the books in front of me. But I checked half an hour ago, so I hope I remember accurately)

    Watchotwer have produced four commentaries covering Revelation 11:18 and the phrase “ruining the earth”: in 1917, 1930, 1969, and 1988. So those are probably the best places to look, in the first instance.

    The Finished Mystery (1917) - applies the phrase to those “corrupting” human society in a moral sense, with a cross reference for the Greek word for corruption.

    Light volume 2 (1930) - also applies it to human society. It talks about those who “pollute” the earth, but apparently in a moral sense.

    Then Is the Finished Mystery of God (1969) - is the first commentary with an environmentalist slant. It says humans have not cared for the physical earth since 1914 in particular and that God will restore the earth to paradise.

    Revelation—Its Grand Climax at Hand! (1988) - goes all out claiming this is a prophecy about the environment complete with illustrations to make the point. (This is the one that for most contemporary JWs springs to mind)

    Other books that discuss Rev 11:18, “ruining the earth” include Vindication volume 2 (1932) which applies the verse specifically to militarism. It says those who promote war—religion and big business—will be destroyed forever. You May Survive Armageddon into God’s New World (1955) also goes with the military angle, specifically saying that nuclear weapons will be removed, which is a kind of an environmental slant, I suppose, or the beginnings of one. (This ties in very well with waton’s comments above based on his recollections from 1957)

    There are also references in Watchtowers and Golden Age magazines that may be worth pursuing.

    It’s fair to point out that JWs probably interpret Rev 11:18 in a way the author didn’t intend. It’s also fair to point out that this is not at all uncommon, and indeed NT writers do the same with the OT. Indeed texts can often “mean” things that authors don’t intend, even in secular contexts. If you believe in inspiration you can even fit this into your understanding of the text: that God inspired the author to write the text in a way that could be interpreted in new situations in the future.

  • smiddy3

    Didn`t Jehovah God ruin the earth when he brought a deluge upon it in Noah`s day ?

    Flooding the earth with fresh rain water ? Above the highest mountains ?

    Aren`t the Oceans of the world salt water ?

    Aren`t there pockets of fresh water , even rivers of fresh water under continents throughout the earth ?

    If the whole world was covered in a global flood as described in the bible ,how do you reconcile these two facts together ?

  • blondie

    smiddy3, I don't reconcile it, it just makes me realize how ridiculous those stories are.

  • BluesBrother

    Bluesbrother....yes the duel use of the Greek word was an example of antanaclasis a literary device. Repeating a word with a dual meaning. Let the dead bury the dead, comes to mind.“

    Good point Peaceful Pete , a very interesting thread.

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