When is a church not a church?

by Lost in the fog 11 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Lost in the fog
    Lost in the fog

    The Watchtower and jehovah's witnesses go out of their way to insist that they are not a church like the false ones of Christendom.

    So why don't they file an IRS tax return?

    Because, according to guidestar they are exempt, since they are a church.


  • blondie

    WTS teaches

    church is the building

    congregation is the people

    The WTS uses terms familiar to public rather than "quibbling" over a point the public/media does not understand

    Just Reporting not Supporting..Blondie

  • cha ching
    cha ching

    Right, and why does the WT use "clergy penitent privilege" in their lawsuits when they 'have no clergy"?

    Why does the WT have all kinds of religions show up at their court case in Canada testifying for them Why does the WT need them? Why does it let them? Why would WT want to use "worldly laws" and ideas when THEY have 'the truth'?

  • blondie


    10. The clergy-laity distinction

    “All you are brothers,” said Jesus to his followers. (Matthew 23:8) The early Christians, including the Bible writers, had no clergy class. This Biblical pattern is the one that Jehovah’s Witnesses follow.


    Interestingly, Jehovah’s Witnesses have for years followed the direction of the Founder of Christianity that “all you are brothers,” and have no clergy class among them.


    Truly the facts establish that clergy-laity distinctions of today are not based on the Holy Scriptures. They have actually hampered Christian growth by discouraging spiritual initiative. Such distinctions that exist in the religious organizations of Christendom are in fulfillment of prophecies that pointed to a turning away from true belief and practice. For example, the apostle Paul told the body of elders or overseers of the Ephesus congregation: “From among you yourselves men will rise and speak twisted things to draw away the disciples after themselves.” (Acts 20:30) Is this not something that should be given serious consideration by those belonging to organizations that approve clergy-laity distinctions?



    Most religions have a paid clergy.

    In contrast, the Witnesses have no paid clergy, and often their Bible literature is offered without price to sincere seekers of truth, though many of these are moved to make voluntary donations. ( Here the WTS makes a distinction between paid and unpaid clergy)

    REPORTING NOT supporting--Blondie

  • steve2

    The JWs have no clergy class - but they do have an elder “class”. Even scholars acknowledge that as the early church began to establish itself in the first century or so, classes of believers began to form - classes that became even more distinct as the centuries passed. (Church refers to the people gathered to worship - over time it increasingly meant the building they gathered in).

    Look at JWs modern-day roots. Roles in early meetings (under Chuck Russell’s presidency) were more informal and less obvious. But with Rutherford and in particular Knorr very distinct roles (“classes”) emerged that were given formalised titles (e.g., Presiding Overseer, Ministerial Servant, etc.).

  • Incognito

    For property tax exemption, it is often worded as 'place of worship'. This would then include not only 'Kingdom Hall' and 'Assembly Hall' but also synagogue, temple, mosque etc..

    WT take additional advantage as they claim printing and administration facilities, warehouse and parking space, housing complexes and individual homes used for Bethel workers and visitors, and other non-worship uses, are also included in the exemption, only because they are owned by a religious organization.

    I had previously seen Brooklyn newspaper articles refer to growing public dissatisfaction expressed to city hall regarding WT's tax exemption on the high number of local properties which resulted in area residents paying a disproportionate share of property taxes. I suspect WT were well aware of this and that may have influenced the decision to sell off Brooklyn properties and relocate to rural upstate locations.

    Buying the contaminated property might be considered by WT as a means to offset lost property tax revenue complaints as that property might not have otherwise been cleaned-up without local government involvement and expense.

  • Ireneus

    Seeking tax exemption itself is not a good sign because everyone thrives on the service of society, and tax money is what each one returns to the society.

  • smiddy3

    Watch Tower uses voluntary contributions to support Bible education and to provide humanitarian assistance.

    Provide humanitarian assistance ? that`s a joke and laughable .

    And they still refuse to advertise their religious meetings along side Church notices in Newspapers local and otherwise.

  • cha ching
    cha ching

    Whenever the WT says so ;-)

  • Finkelstein

    In contrast, the Witnesses have no paid clergy

    Bullshit JWS CO's are paid for by the circuit they overlook.

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