Hello. I am new here, and am a Christian. I had a young man and mother attempt to sell JW to my wife, who agreed to listen but only when I am there. We are meeting with them tomorrow. My question to you guys is whay approach would be most effective to witness to them? I have a working understanding of JW such as the lies, deceipt, misrepresenation of scripture, changing of scripture, et al. However, for those who left, I ask you what would have helped change your mind? I don't want to be pushy or controversial, I know they will "wall-up" and nothing will be accomplished. Can anyone help me here?
Need Help Witnessing to JWs
Welcome to the forum, my friend.
No doubt you shall recieve a host a answers, each more worthy of any reply that I could ever give you
I'd just like to welcome you to the forum.
Peace to you !
The following is from Randy Watters
It is rare to find a Witness who has not seen or heard information exposing the dishonesty of the Watchtower. Why, then, do they not see a problem? Evidently, something else has prevented them from objectively analyzing factual information. Their minds are trained to stop short of doubting the organization - a wall has been erected which says, in effect, "This far you may go, and no further."
What kind of powerful motivation prevents the Witness from entering the "dangerous" waters of critical investigation? The motivation is fear; the underlying problem is misplaced securities. The Christian concept of trusting a supernatural God is replaced with a more visible and concrete symbol, namely, the organization; God's organization. The Witness learns that serving the organization is the same as serving God. The organization is the mother, God is the father, and the Witness is to obey his "parents." Since the Witness cannot see nor experience real interaction with God, his only tie with God is through the visible organization. It is, in effect, "God" to him (though he would not admit to or recognize it).
Convincing the Witness that the organization is deceptive is like trying to convince a 5-year-old child who loves his parents that his father is in jail for armed robbery - he simply doesn't believe his father is dishonest. In fact, he can't tolerate the thought, since he has placed all of his security and trust in his father and mother. The truth is too fearful and devastating to consider. Therefore, to protect his source of security, he rejects the factual information as being a lie.
The same is true of the Witness. He knows that if the organization is not really directed by God, he has no other tangible security to go to. He says, "Where else can I go?" So he remains within the system as years go by, continuing to ignore the barrage of factual information undermining the entire Watchtower structure. The more and more he ignores the facts, the more narrow-minded and adamant he becomes that he will never change, and he is more convinced than ever that he has the truth. He digs himself into a trench, erecting all sorts of mental barricades against his real enemy, which is doubt. While this seems incredible to the person trying to reach the Witness with the facts, it is just a simple protective mechanism, keeping the Witness from the trauma of losing his sense of security. In order to rationalize away the false prophecies and inconsistencies of the organization, the Witness must, in effect, deceive himself into thinking there is really no discrepancy in the organization. 1
While Christians have their security in a spiritual relationship with the person of Christ, Witnesses are taught to put faith in an organization. If they have faith in the organization, they have faith in God. The two are inseparable; so much so, that to lose faith in the organization means a corresponding loss of faith in God. This is precisely why the Witness must protect himself through the process of self-deception. He cannot bear the pain of losing his faith.
The above arcticle continues with questions to ask JW's. Also I have found a Wt arcticle which deals with many of the same issues as brought up in the above arcticle:
The January 15, 1970 Watchtower p. 37-40 contains arcticle titled:
"Which Comes First- Your Church or God?"
"The "first man" represents the believers who remain faithful to their church out of loyalty to the religion they were brought to believe in. Thier attitude is: Right or wrong, it is my religion! Is that the way you feel? If so, you are certainly a loyal person. But to whom do you owe the greater loyalty-to your church, or to God? With so much disbelief rife throughout the earth, you are to be commended for maintaining your faith, but where should your faith be placed-in a religious organization, or in God?" p.37
"The "second man" mentioned in the Nouvel Observateur represents those Catholics and Protestants who stay with their church because they do not know where else to go. They havebeen taught that their church represents God, and they do not want to turn away from him. They disapprove of many church practices or doctrines, but they hope to reform their church from within. Typical of these are the 744 French Catholics who, in November 1968, sent a long open letter to the pope. In it they stated: "Today the Christian needs to live in a 'true' Church . . . Therefore all that is false, contrary to the Gospel and scandalous within the Church today wounds the Christian." Then followed a long list of grievances against the Catholic Church and it current teachings and practices. Yet, toward the end, these catholics expressed their unconditional adherence to their church by alluding to John 6:68 and stating: "Who could we go to? In her [the Roman Catholic Church] we find the One who has words of eternal life." p.39
I beileve that this Watchtower arcticle can with a few simple questions be used effectively to separate the witnesses "Loyalty to God" from "Loyalty to the Organization". The Issue of faith in a religious organization being separte from faith in God is addressed nicely. Also issues of "where else to go" and the misappication of John 6:68 from Christ to a "church" or "organization" can be very effectively brought up using this arcticle.
In an earlier post the follwing was given by a former witness as some of the reasons for staying in the Watchtower Organization:
"Obstacles/hinderances: Loyalty. Thinking that there was no where else to go. Fear of the unknown. Believing God and the Watchtower were inseperable. Believing we would lose Gods protective barrier and bring death on our family (Like Job) if we left."
I believe that the above article can be used effectively and non-offensively to deal with these common issues.
Did they talk about a particular topic to your wife? If so, that might be where to start. Or, is there a specific topic your wife has dear to her heart?
My personal choice would be blood transfusions--why can JWs accept blood fractions such as albumin and hemoglobin based products?
or disfellowshipping is another.
In the Witness mind faith in the Organization is the same as faith in God, leaving "Jehovah's Organization" is the same as leaving Jehovah himself. Doubting the organization is the same as doubting Jehovah. So before bringing up damaging information it is helpful to separate the Witnesses faith in God (which we want them to keep) from faith in the WT Organization (which we want them to loose)
Here are some questions which can be brought up using the above 1970 Watchtower arcticle in which while speaking of other groups they contradict the above principals which they usually drum into JW minds. In the Witness mind faith in the Organization is the same as faith in God, leaving "Jehovah's Organization" is the same as leaving Jehovah himself. Doubting the organization is the same as doubting Jehovah. So before bringing up damaging information it is helpful to separate the Witnesses faith in God (which we want them to keep) from faith in the WT Organization (which we want them to loose)
Here are some questions which can be brought up using the above 1970 Watchtower arcticle in which while speaking of other groups they contradict the above principals which they usually drum into JW minds.
Is questioning a religious organization that claims to represent God the same as questioning God?
Is doubting a religious organization that claims to represent God the same as doubting God?
Where should we place our ultimate faith: in a religious organization or in God?
If for some reason you lost faith in your religious organization would you still have faith in God?
To whom do we owe the greater loyaly to a religious organization or God?
Does John 6:68 refer to a church organization or to a person (Jesus Christ). Should a religious organizaion take a passage applied to Jesus Christ and apply it to itself?
If for some reason you left your religious organization to whom whould you go?
To whom does John 6:68 say to go?
they tried to prove that Jesus was merely a man, or small g. They used typical scripture distortions. She is very heartful and her faith is based purely on heart. My angle is different. I am more of a head person, logic. I teach apologetics at my Church and have never had a true debate with a JW, although I have tried. My angle was to keep on target, who do they say Jesus is. I don't know any of you here, or your current beliefs or convictions, however, I truely believe in Christ. My goal is to move them from the JW lies to the truth. Is this even worthy of debate? I have this little birdie wispering in my ear that I am going to say something that will force their walls up. I don't want that to happen, as I truely want them to come to the truth.
You probably need to get them to open their mind to fact that the Wt may not be "God's Organization" before they will be able to even consider the deity of Jesus Christ.
If you are giong to discuss doctrine its probably best to discuss the bodily resurrection of believers with them (Isaiah 26:19) then move on to the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ with them (John 2:19-22). The witnesses deny both of these doctrines nad teach that Jesus' body was dissolved into gas or "disposed" of.
But before discussing doctrine, you should pray and probably implement some for of counter-mind control. Read the above arcticle by Randy Waters. If you want a copy of the 1970 Wt arcticle, e-mail me. I have never been a witness so you did not recieve this information from "apostates"
Can't hurt to try once. I have recently stopped attending JW meetings. I have not abandoned all my beliefs but I am re-examining them one by one against several non-NWT Bibles. I studied with some people about 10 years ago and they planted some thoughts that grew as I re-examined.
Most JWs will not debate. Some will argue though. If you don't see it their way, they move on. So many JWs do not understand the basis for their beliefs, just a few scriptures. I suggest picking one topic and learn it well. If they don't get that, moving onto another topic will not matter.
Don't pick anything too deep or complicated.
Blondie (over 45 years on the other side of your door as a JW who left not over a doctrinal issue but because of the lack of love in the WTS organization John 13:34,35)
thanks, I definitely will use your info. I grew up Catholic, so I can relate to the feelings of "where will I go". I was scared to leave "THE" church. Boy was that the best thing that ever happend to me.
this is what I have been told. I am sure that I will get many, "I don't know I will look it up" or just nothing. Again, my plan is to ask who do they say Jesus is, then go on from there. I don't want to attack the JW as a whole as I don't want them to leave too early as I have paid to get the kids to a babbysitter :)