By What Authority Do you Teach?

by Vanderhoven7 13 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Half banana
    Half banana

    The degree of certainty of a belief has absolutely no relationship with the reality of that belief. Beliefs may give you an emotional lift but only with knowledge, hard evidence, comes certainty of an outcome. Beliefs are only in the mind, evidence is external.

    Out of the 95 billion people who have died, how many have gone to heaven so far? There is not one glimmer of tangible evidence for any one person doing so. Heaven is a confidence trick.

  • GrreatTeacher

    Yes, one life and the older you are the faster it seems to go by.

    It took me awhile to understand my husband's need to go at life full- tilt.

    When you are bipolar, you go from living fast and furious alternating with living slow and sluggish. Treatment for me is learning how to live life moderately and steadily.

    My husband has been tortured with a back that has been filled with metal and he hurts all the time.

    He hasn't been able to secure approval from his work man's comp adjuster for two months for a new type of injection in his back. Apparently trying to go between 2 different vertebrae this time requires an audit of his entire medical history and an act of God. ( which could be why it's taking so long! ) He has been working through severe pain.

    Today, while taking a day off for an inspiring visit to the DMV, he took his bike and did a 30 mile bike ride!

    It used to make me crazy because that seems a good way to hurt his back even worse. And sometimes he does hurt afterward.

    But, now I get it. Every time he rides he fears it will be his last. His vertebrae are slowly deteriorating. He could end up losing mobility and won't be able to cycle anymore. Ever.

    I worry about him accelerating that process with hard exercise.

    He worries that each ride will be his last. He needs to enjoy it while he can.

    There are no do overs, no cycling in the "new system." or another afterlife or even another reincarnated life.

    Just one chance, people. Make it count.

  • Carmichael

    I think it can be a holdover from our Watchtower days to read 2 Timothy 3:15-17 in such a way to imply that Paul was telling Timothy to live and teach by the authority of the Scriptures.

    Case in point, the context reads:

    12 Indeed, all who want to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. 13 But wicked people and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving others and being deceived. 14 But as for you, continue in what you have learned and firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it, 15 and how from childhood you have known the sacred writings that are able to instruct you for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.--2 Timothy 3:12-15, NRSV, italics added.

    Note that Paul is talking about 'living a godly life' and contrasting that with the life lived by "wicked people and imposters," who are not evil because they disbelieve but because of their actions. Then Timothy is told to "continue" following what he has "learned and firmly believed," past tense. This is something even the Watchtower has admitted here: the study of the Hebrew Scriptures, especially the Torah since the Christian Scriptures did not exist yet.

    Timothy is encouraged to live a life of "faith in Christ" by being an observant Jew and not by living a life of evil actions--and an observant Jew is not a person who lives a life of static faith. The word for "faith" in this text is the Greek word "pistis" and it actually translates as "faithful" meaning acting faithfully toward, not "having faith" in Jesus.

    Here is another log to throw on the fire--note 1 Timothy 3:14-15:

    I hope to come to you soon, but I am writing these instructions to you so that, if I am delayed, you may know how one ought to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and bulwark of the truth.--NRSV

    Here, Paul tell Timothy that he can learn how "to behave in the house of God" by following the direction of "the church" which is "the pillar and bulwark of the truth."

    Here, Paul tells Timothy to go to the "church" for "truth." But in the next letter to remember to follow Torah if he wants to be found faithful in service to Christ Jesus.

    Of course, this would end up being a very conflicting direction to give and take. I don't think there's ever been one particular way to "follow Torah." Paul's personal interpretation of it was that of the Pharisees. Like the joke of three synagogues for every two Jews ("one for me, one for him, and one neither of us would ever be caught dead in") being "observant" in Judaism has always been fluid and up to interpretation. It is also not actually Scriptural to be observant (not enough room to explain that one, but I am sure those with experience here know what I am talking about). I have kept a kosher home for some time, so just take my word on it for now.

    But the idea that either a static faith in Jesus over a "pistis" faith in Jesus' works is ridiculous. And then if one is to have "pistis" in Jesus, actual "faithfulness" then one is to have an actual authority to tell you what acts one must do in order to be faithful and good or being evil and wicked. Paul told Timothy it was the "church" of his time, but historically the only body that fits that bill is abhorrent to the Jehovah's Witnesses.

    My two cents: if you're gonna do the Jesus thing, then you gotta do what it says you gotta do. You don't like the Church, too bad. The historical Church comes with the package, wrote the package, invented the package, etc. Everything else is just playing and pretending Christianity. That's why I don't do it since I was old enough to get on my own and leave the JWs.

    "Rational free spirits pay attention to outer evidence. Crazy free spirits listen only to inner voices."--Rabbi Sherwin T. Wine.


    Authority- it is real, but overlooked and not scrutinized in reality.

    The bible is Catholic book. It was always a Catholic book and only a small part of the Catholic faith. It was specifically developed for use in their liturgy.

    It was not ever intended as a guide to Christianity as the cannon of the bible was not fully accepted/confirmed until the late 4th century [around 382ad].

    The Catholic church created and protected it though the centuries. How could anyone else say that they have a better or more valid authority on interpreting the bible?

    If there is no authority [other than a 'self appointment'], then you will be likely be mislead.

    Interesting [to me] that relics, candles, incense, sacraments and prayers from the Catholic Church are ridiculed, but their scriptures are honored in word, but not in deed.

    Authority. Who has it?

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