"This system will probably be over in about 5 years"

by john.prestor 41 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • john.prestor

    I don't think I shared this story yet, it's strange and although I did a little detective work trying to figure out who said what and when I never found out much, big surprise, Jehovah's Witnesses love their secrets as we all know... But I thought other posters might find this interesting both in and of itself, because of what an Elder told me one Sunday back in 2011, and because of what it could imply as to high-ranking Jehovah's Witnesses prophesying the date of Armageddon. Specific dates went out the window in 1975, although Governing Body helper Ken Flodin hinted at 2040 in a talk uploaded to jw.org a couple years back, and the Governing Body hinted at 2034 in a Watchtower back in the 90s. But it might be, just might, that more specific date-setting still goes on behind closed doors in certain circuits...

    So after I went to "meetings" and talked to Witnesses for a couple years at a rural congregation in the eastern United States an Elder pulled me aside one service into the vestibule at the hall, in other words, into a private area where no one would overhear us. He did this as I went to leave early after the "public talk" or "Bible discourse" (who knows which, I never saw any difference between the two) so nobody was coming or going into the hall either. The Witnesses there knew I attended college nearby and they kinda begrudgingly respected that or pretended to at least, but this Elder, who I barely knew, told me that I should think about dropping out. I asked why of course, gently, you always gotta be gentle with Witnesses, and he lowered his voice and told me, "This system will probably be over in about 5 years."

    I was stunned. He must have noticed that because he immediately clarified, "That's what we're being told by our Circuit Overseer," basically to say I didn't pull this out of a hat, you can trust me on this. Then he said something like he knew I was thinking about where I would work and what career I would pursue but that I "probably won't use it," meaning my degree, because his daughter went to school for teaching I think but now pioneers in Africa... maybe because he told her the same thing and she wanted to make sure she survived Armageddon?

    I never heard anything else about this and I didn't want to really ask around too much because if he told me away from everybody else and even lowered his voice he clearly told me something "confidential" he knew someone or some other persons didn't want getting out. I asked a Ministerial Servant I talked to a lot and he made a weird remark, something about if Armageddon got close enough Jehovah might tell Jesus the exact date but when I asked if Jesus would tell Witnesses he insisted he wouldn't, but it still felt funny to me, I dunno, maybe I read into it. The CO visited about a month before that and I heard him say in one of his talks on a Tuesday night, "What if we knew there was only 10 years left for this system, how would we live our life?" but then he joked, "Don't even go there," saying more or less he wasn't being serious but you know... you kinda already went there, man. So I never found out if he just made a remark like that in a meeting with Elders or if he full on just told them, 5 years guys, it's coming in 5 years.

    I thought this morning about writing that Elder all these years later and saying, Hey buddy, it's been more than about 5 years, thanks for trying to fuck up my chances at getting a good job, know you didn't mean to but seriously, what the hell? Who else did you tell? Did you ever apologize? You didn't even have the balls to say what you meant, you couched it in two qualifiers, "probably" and "about" but you didn't want me to think probably or about, you wanted me to read between the lines and only hear the 5 years thing. Shame on you.

    I just might.

  • Finkelstein

    The JW religion is very much about manipulation and exploitation, its framed upon lies and ignorance but that's mostly unexpected when people want to have relationship with god.

    Ironically back in the late 1800's the IBSA under C T Russell the owner of the WTS back then was saying the very same thing, " This system of things is about to come to a close "

  • Incognigo Montoya
    Incognigo Montoya

    Undoubtedly he will have conveniently forgotten the conversation and deny he ever said that. There are many people who, when they reach an age where they realize the dreams and goals they set as a young adult are now unachievable, love to drag others down with them. Misery loves company. I am certain a similar mindset comes into play when elders and other witnesses admonish younger ones not to pursue education in order to secure a good job and comfortable life. Sure they toe the line and regurgitate the societies rhetoric on pursuing higher education, and perhaps some of them are sincere and believe they have your best interests at heart. Many, however, see their failure in your success. Even if they appear successful themselves, they probably would've gone much further had they put more effort in, instead of devoting at least a portion of their time to the organization. Good on you for following your gut.

  • sir82

    The "end of this system of things" is always "less than 5 years away".

    It was "less than 5 years away" in:


    It will be "less than 5 years away" in 2020...2021...2022.......2050...2051...2052.......

  • sir82

    About 10 years ago, the local bug-eyed nuthead elder (every congregation has at least one) got up on stage one fine evening, and said, more or less verbatim:

    "At our recent district convention, did they say the end was soon? I didn't hear them say it was soon. Did you hear them say it was soon? I didn't hear them say it was soon. No, they said it was....[dramatic pause for effect...2 seconds...3 seconds...5 seconds...] imminent!"

    As if "imminent" were not a precise synonym for "soon".

    I recently saw said bug-eyed nuthead elder. He has aged about 30 years in the last 10. He's in his mid-60s but he has the health problems of someone in his 80's, and hell, looks like he's in his 80s.

    I imagine he has forgotten about how "imminent" the end is.

  • Betheliesalot
    I heard an elder say that the United States was going to collapse so very soon because of Trump. These type of statements are what they are famous for and in my mind I was calling him a fool. Kind of like on CNN the head of air traffic controllers union said that with the shortage of workers, it is making air traffic less safe. So if there just happens to be a crash, they can point to "see I told you so".
  • sir82

    I heard an elder say that the United States was going to collapse so very soon because of Trump.

    Said to me in the early 80s:

    "I'm sure Reagan is going to be the one to lead us into the great tribulation!"

  • redvip2000

    Yeah, the Trump presidency has lit a fire in the butts of JWs. Even my family has made little comments about the current state of things. They see in Trump the fuse that will set the system on fire.

    Then, of course, in a few years when Trump is gone, is back to sad faces and back to looking for the next crisis.

  • john.prestor

    Ah, so this kinda thing is relatively common at least, interesting. There's no specific date set to the Trump and Reagan prophecies but presidents can't serve for more than 8 years so there effectively is.

  • steve2

    Reagan believed in Bible prophesy and spoke aggressively about the USSR. Guess what the JWs were saying about the nearness of the end back in the mid 1980s.

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