COMMENTS YOU WILL NOT HEAR AT THE 5-18-03 WT STUDY
April 1, 2003 WT
WT Comments are in
Review comments are in black and parentheses
EXHIBIT "ALL MILDNESS TOWARD ALL MEN"
Titus 3 (NIV)
Doing What is Good
1 Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good, 2 to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and to show true humility toward all men.
Who should Christians imitate? Christ, of course, you might say. Yet, how often does the WTS or the elders compare those in the congregation to others. "Why can’t you regular pioneer like Sister Manyproblems or Sister Illhealth?"
Relying on sheer willpower is not enough.
That statement from the WTS is true. But whose power should be relied upon and how.
The more we yield to the leadings of God’s active force
Can you explain what the leadings of the holy spirit are?
8/1/01 p. 16
To the extent that our thinking and actions are responsive to the leading of God’s spirit, to that extent we become spiritually mature. How can we achieve this objective? We must open our heart and mind to the influence of God’s spirit. This involves our faithfully attending and participating in Christian meetings. We should also regularly study and meditate on God’s Word, allowing its principles to guide our dealings with others and the choices and decisions we make.
Yes, we can only be lead by the holy spirit if we attend meetings at the KH according to the WTS. Just staying at home and studying the Bible is not enough.
IN THE FAMILY
"Screaming and abusive speech…some couples have allowed "malicious bitterness" to affect their relationship…has no place in Christian families."
But do not kid yourself, there is many a JW family that put on a wonderful face at the KH, and yell at their families all the way home. I know of one sister that tried to talk to the elders about her verbally abusive JW husband. The elders said, "You are exaggerating what he has said; maybe he had a bad day at work; the children were probably irritating him," in other words, she and the children were the problem.
Mildness is especially important in a religiously divided home. Coupled with kindly deeds, it can help to win over to Jehovah those who are not favorably disposed.
It is with reasoning like this that the WTS encourages sisters to stay with abusive husbands. Note this experience:
But then opposition started. "Arriving home from the assembly," she relates, "my mother beat me. My husband too opposed me; and so did many others in the family. Due to fear of having their reputation besmirched if I became a Witness, my mother even threatened suicide. However, one of my sisters showed interest in the Bible and began to study with Jehovah’s Witnesses. This caused other family members to turn against both of us. Our books were destroyed and the Witnesses who studied with us were threatened with death."
As a result of what this woman was learning from her study of the Bible, she sought reconciliation with her husband, from whom she had separated.A home was located and she and her two children again began living with her husband. But this did not end the opposition to her Bible study. "Many times on returning from a Christian meeting," she explains, "I found that my husband had locked the doors. When I finally would be permitted to enter, a beating was waiting for me and the children."
The Bible urges Christians not to return evil for evil, but to display long-suffering.(Rom. 12:17, 18) The young woman endeavored to heed this Scriptural advice. It had a rewarding outcome, as she points out, saying:
"After three long years I was baptized, in April 1978. From then on I have had continuous blessings from Jehovah. My husband has softened his attitude and has begun studying the Bible. We are a united family. My sister is now baptized. Her husband also has had a change of attitude. He has shown interest in Bible study and attends meetings at the Kingdom Hall. My parents, too, have changed. Previously they had refused to recognize me anymore as their daughter. But now they view that decision as foolish and do not wish to lose their children just for the sake of what others may think. All my relatives now want to learn about the Bible."
A case in point is one of Jehovah’s witnesses in Liberia. The mother of five children, she lived with her non-Witness husband in a very remote village of less than ten houses. Through jungles and swamps she would make her way to the Kingdom Hall, always being among the first to arrive. This despite the fact that for eight years her husband opposed her, even subjecting her to great physical abuse.
There was the time that he wounded her seriously with a stick. He inflicted wounds on one of her legs and told her, ‘Let me see how you can go to the Kingdom Hall without legs.’ She was in bed for some days, but as soon as she felt better and could walk a bit, her first trip was to the Kingdom Hall, to the disappointment of her husband.
Finally, after many similar incidents, came the climax. Their large rice farm was about to be harvested. The husband chose this time to abandon the family, with no intention of returning to his Witness wife. He went to the capital city of Monrovia. Meanwhile, fellow Witnesses harvested the rice, thereby saving the mother and her children from starvation.
At Monrovia, the husband, by coincidence, found accommodations with a man who, unknown to him, was one of Jehovah’s witnesses. This Witness invited him to a meeting and, though he did not know the nature of the meeting, he just could not refuse to go, as he was staying in the home. At the Kingdom Hall he was warmly welcomed and learned that those in attendance were Jehovah’s witnesses, just like his wife. Their kindness impressed him, as he never thought that such a "crazy religion" (as he had been calling it) could be practiced by people in a city like Monrovia. Later, in the house, he confessed to the Witness accommodating him that he was going back to his family and would worship Jehovah.Back home he kneeled down before his wife, related his experiences and asked her for forgiveness. Since then he never misses a meeting at the Kingdom Hall and is now zealously telling others about the truth that he once bitterly opposed. Moral of both stories: let your husband beat you and your children and he will come into the truth (Of course, they leave out the stories where the husband kills the wife or children.)IN OUR MINISTRY Others, for a variety of reasons, may react unfavorably. Probably saw one of those shows on the cover-up of child abuse in the WTS organization. Manifest both mildness and respect when witnessing to those who speak harshly. How can a JW show respect for someone he/she has already decided is doomed to eternal death at Armageddon? Did you ever have an experience when the brother or sister with you at the door started yelling at the householder? What did you do to defuse the problem?An experience in the WT give this suggestion. Keith’s wife angrily accused the Witnesses of cruelty to children (I wonder if that was in regard to blood transfusions?) The brother remained calm…"I am sorry you feel that way. May I please show you what Jehovah’s Witnesses believe?" But, Later, the couple began to feel regret…a week later the brother returned (JWs don’t call on those that respond nicely and he called back on these people…hmmm?) And of course they were eventually baptized. So is the reason why fewer people are being baptized is that JWs are not showing mildness from door to door?IN THE CONGREGATION Debates, arguments, and wrangling…such worldly traits creep into the Christian congregation…responsible brothers (elders who argue more during their meetings than any rank and file member in the congregation) are saddened…try to win back erring ones (including fellow contentious elders?).When we maintain a mild temper even under provocation, dissenters (apostates?) are often moved to reassess criticisms. Note how they assume that dissenters aren’t making valid points that need to be addressed. Are the elders always right? Laid the basis for peace and unity Must the minority always give in to the majority for the sake of peace and unity? Consider the account of the 12 spies sent into Canaan. Ten spies came back with a negative account and discouraged the nation of Israel from going into the Promised Land. Only 2 spies "dissented" saying that God who support them and protect them. The ten even tried to stone the two who "dissented." It became apparent that 2 spies were presenting God’s view. The ten wandered for 40 years in the wilderness while the 2, Joshua and Caleb, were rewarded with long life and leadership roles when Israel finally did go in. What do we learn from this, dissenters in the minority can be right and reflect God’s viewpoint and that it is wrong to give into the majority when their viewpoint does not reflect God’s. All Christians, including appointed men, are subject to sinful tendencies. But it is only the rank and file that will be "adjusted." Because of that, problems build and fester for years in many congregations, and can be tied to the lack of "mildness" of many long-time elders."TOWARD ALL MEN" Our love for Jehovah will help us recognize his supreme authority and give governmental authorities the relative subjection that they are due.Even when those in high station seek to limit the public expression of our worship of Jehovah (by interfering with our internal way of handling child abuse, that those things are confidential because we have clergy privilege, oh, that’s right we say we aren’t clergy) We strive to be reasonable while never compromising righteous principles. But note this compromise the WTS made with the Bulgarian government regarding blood transfusions.
"The applicant undertook with regard to its stance on blood transfusions to draft a statement for inclusion in its statute providing that members should have free choicein the matter for themselves and their children, without any control or sanction on the part of the association." (Emphasis ours) http://www.ajwrb.org/basics/abandon.shtml The article concludes with the two rewards which motivate, ruling in heaven and paradise on earth. Not a word about vindication of Jehovah’s sovereignty, supposedly the most important motivator.Conclusion
Times are getting tougher for the ordinary JW as they go from door to door. It is harder to be mild when there are so many more issues like child abuse, WTS association with the UN, the ever-changing blood issue with its recent blood fractions. More and more families in the congregations are falling part, with husbands and wives separating, and 8 out of 10 young people leaving the organization. Elder bodies are becoming more fractious as the truly mild ones step aside rather than continue to battle.
For too many years, the WTS has taught that it is more important what we do on the outside than what we are on the inside. It is the cup that is clean on the outside, but filth on the inside that Jesus spoke about in regard to the Pharisees. Just as they had the Torah and supplemented it with the Talmud, the elders of today have the Pay Attention to the Flock book and body of elder letters to supplement the scriptures. Should you stay or should you leave? What did Jesus followers do—did they stay with the Pharisaical religion?Blondie