If WWI Had Not Started In 1914
Coming to the realization that 1914 could've been just a lucky guess (even though I knew it was originally supposed to be the beginning of Armageddon) was the last thing that motivated me to look online at sites like this one and jwfacts. Their "prediction" of 1914 was the last thing holding me captive for probably a couple years. They got a lucky guess and milked it for all it was worth. I think they'd probably still be around without it, but they'd look really different.
WW1 became a vehicle of exploitation, as well WW2 as pointed out difficult end times (wars) prophecies etc.
The WTS would have still held to its calculated dating of that year irregardless of WW1 not happening at all.
Fear mongering charlatans have been using wars as support of the supposed end times and not just by the WTS. alone.
When people basically have a measure of belief in the bible , that in itself gets exploited by many religious charlatans as they intentionally try to attract attention to their literature , movie DVD's etc.
More people attracted by the future jworg promises than by the past "fulfillment".
See the period of rapid growth before 1975, then in 1980s, early 1990s when the generation was sooo old. Maybe after the WW2 they got some credit for their pacifism / persecution in the camps, but I feel people are coming to JWdom to have their panda and nice house after the A. The borg is exploiting problems like corruption, crime, wars, insecurity to covert new members.
Actually the original date was 1874. When nothing happened, recalculate to 1878 nope nothing again, then 1914 oops nope!
These dates were for the rapture, not for any enthronement.
Pretty much you had Christians calling Christ a liar when he said no one knows the date .... 'cause Russell, Barbour, Rutherford, etc all said they did.
Now what to do? Restate and say Christ was invisibly enthroned in 1914; which of course is also unscriptual.
They couldn't stop there at making stuff up. Rutherford goes on to shut the gates of heaven himself in what was it 1935?
It was like crack for them, dates, dates, and more dates. Lies, lies, and more lies. Now it's a monster that they can't take back.
The disgusting thing is that people back then still respected the Bible and those guys made one hell of a snare and racket out of it. But not just them, others also.
Anyhow, it all actually started in 1912 with the Balkan Wars. The Bosnians (using Serb supplied weapons) simply waited until an Austro-Hungarian Royal came into the Balkan to pop him; which happened in 1914.
There were lots of similar 'new age' religions around that time originating from the millerite movement, just a product of society and circumstances. No doubt they would have picked some other day. Other religions from the same source didn't pick 1914 as anything special for instance.
They claimed 1914 as proof of their legitimacy long after the fact, so no, probably not.
The WTS has been changing dates all the time.
1874 to 1878
The Watchtower attempts to support its claim that the Last Days started in 1914 by presenting information to prove there are substantially more earthquakes, wars, famine and sickness since the start of the twentieth century. This article shows how inaccurate and dishonest such information is.
A person should be realistic about the ability of the Watchtower Society to interpret prophecy. To date there has been a proven time prophecy failure rate of 100%. As shown in the Dates section, the Watchtower used Bible prophecy to explain that the following dates were of significance; 1780, 1799, 1829, 1844, 1846, 1872, 1874, 1875, 1878, 1880, 1881, 1891, 1906, 1910, 1915, 1920, 1921 and 1925. Every single one of these interpretations is now admitted as wrong. Even 1914 and 1918 were not fulfilled as expected and subsequently reinterpreted after the event. This does not inspire confidence that Holy Spirit guides Watchtower prophetic interpretation, or that current understanding of 1914 is correct.
As blondie had mentioned, WT had numerous dates from 1799 till 1881 (1874+7) and it was always explained backwards not a forward event. WT was not aware that Jesus selected them until 1918/1919 after he spent 3.5 years examining the Christian religion and found its follower among couple crazies in USA charged with sedition.
kalk: "he spent 3.5 years examining the Christian religion and found its follower among couple crazies in USA charged with sedition." but "he" liked the idea of the world ending invisibly, and defrocking the apostles as the faithful slave and installing the crazies, "The millions will never die " fxx prophets, the future generation under-lappers.
JW Rogue I think the JW religion would have continued on a similar track with or without WW1 starting in 1914.
The prophesied date of 1914 according to Russell (who borrowed his ideas from others) was to have been the latest date for the destruction of all God's enemies and the restoration of the Earth under Christ's rule. Most significantly though, and with great financial consequences, it was also promised to see the visible return of Christ.
By the end of the nineteenth century The Russellites had been just a local affair around Pittsburg but so I have read, announcing the actual date for the "second advent" of JC was Russell's special baby which began after the turn of the century. It was publishing this prophecy which brought fame and attention for Russell from the whole world as a syndicated preacher.
It was a great disappointment for Russell and co and a public failure of his credibility but he postponed the date, as all doomsday merchants have to, to 1915 and as ever , to no effect. He did announce to Bethel that the world had in fact ended...like you do.
It was only later probably in Rutherford's gloss on Russell's predictions that the mention of 1914 was seen to be a divine insight. Rutherford's WT in the twenties, I believe began the idea...and the Watchtower always builds castles on its own myths.