Questions About the Watchtower's View on Blood Transfusions.

by Pallbearer 40 Replies latest watchtower medical

  • Diogenesister
    Also, most white blood cells are found in organ tissue, not in the blood itself. Each organ transplant, permitted by the society since 1980, necessitates the transfer of millions of white blood cells.

    I believe witnesses will have bone marrow transplants(?) If so they are taking the very thing that produces those white cells and red cells!

  • Alex Williams
    Alex Williams

    Jehovah’s Witnesses do not accept blood.Yet new issues arise because blood can now be processed into four primary components and fractions of those components. In deciding whether to accept such when a doctor tell him he will die if he doesn't receive a transfusion or at least components or fractions. A Christian Witness should look beyond possible medical benefits and risks. His concern should be what the Bible says and the potential effect on his relationship with God. Lets go back in time to after the flood which destroyed not the earth but wicked people,after this event God told the survivors they could now eat meat which means they must have been vegetarians.Why could they now eat animals could be because of how the earth changed since a world wide destruction ,trees must have been damaged not producing fruit and it would take time to farm crops months to harvest;

    In Genesis 9.1-5 we read:

    Then God blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth.The fear and dread of you will fall upon all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air, upon every creature that moves along the ground, and upon all the fish of the sea; they are given into your hands. Everything that lives and moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything. “But you must not eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it. And for your lifeblood I will surely demand an accounting. I will demand an accounting from every animal.” (NIV)

    Thats the basis of not eating blood as to what God told Noah[ you must not eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it.] Each person can raise their hand in the KH to the question would you take blood alternatives and answer no under no circumstances but when actually faced with death may compromise and even take a blood transfusion.

    Jehovah’s Witnesses certainly want to keep living, we are committed to obey Jehovah’s law on blood. What does this mean in the light of current medical practice not known before? . Medicine has changed over time. Today, most transfusions are not of whole blood but of one of its primary components, red cells,white cells , platelets,plasma serum fluid. Physicians might prescribe red cells, white cells, platelets, or plasma. Transfusing these major components allows a single unit of blood to be divided among more patients. Jehovah’s Witnesses hold that accepting whole blood or any of those four primary components violates God’s law.

    However, since modern technology blood can be processed beyond those primary components, questions arise about fractions derived from the primary blood components. How are such fractions used, and what should a JW consider when deciding on them is the central question.Blood is complex. Even the plasma which is 90 percent water carries hormones, inorganic salts, enzymes, and nutrients, including minerals and sugar. Plasma also carries such proteins as albumin, clotting factors, and antibodies to fight diseases. Technicians isolate and use many plasma proteins. For example, clotting factor VIII has been given to hemophiliacs, who bleed easily. Or if someone is exposed to certain diseases, doctors might prescribe injections of gamma globulin, extracted from the blood plasma of people who already had immunity. Other plasma proteins are used medically, but the above mentioned illustrate how a primary blood component PLASMA may be processed to obtain fractions.

    The WTS says the Bible does not give details on these since these procedures didnt exist thousands of years ago so a JW must make his own conscientious decision before God. Some JWs would refuse anything derived from blood even fractions intended to provide temporary passive immunity. That is how they understand God’s command to ‘abstain from blood.Other JWs decide differently. They too refuse transfusions of whole blood, red cells, white cells, platelets, or plasma. Yet, they might allow a physician to treat them with a fraction extracted from the primary components. Even here there may be differences. One JW may accept a gamma globulin injection, but he may or may not agree to an injection containing something extracted from red or white cells. Overall, though, what might lead some JWs to conclude that they could accept blood fractions?

    Some JWs may conclude that since blood fractions can pass to another person during birth when the mother passes immunoglobulins to her child ,plasma proteins fractions move from a pregnant woman’s blood to the separate blood system of her fetus
    they could accept a blood fraction derived from blood plasma or cells.

    The Bible directs to abstain from things sacrificed to idols and from blood and from fornication.’ (Acts 15:29) Beyond that, when it comes to fractions of any of the primary components, each JWs after careful and prayerful meditation, must conscientiously decide for himself.

  • Vanderhoven7

    Hi Alex,

    Why does the WTS ban plasma when all the components of plasma (water, albumin, proteins) are on the acceptable list?

    And why does the WTS allow organ transplants which result in the transfer of millions of white blood cells?

    Call me curious.

  • TD

    The Bible directs to abstain from things sacrificed to idols and from blood and from fornication.’ (Acts 15:29)

    The JW Bible Encyclopedia, Insight On the Scriptures, under the article, "Paul" openly acknowledges that the mention of blood in Acts 15 was a reference to eating it as forbidden in the Law.

    It therefore becomes incumbent upon you, the claimant, to bridge the gap between the eating of blood and the transfusion of blood.

    Can you do this?

    Surely you don't believe that the transplant of a human kidney, for example is the same as eating it simply because they both fall into the more generic category of "Taking in?"

    That would be a childish equivocation.

  • Alex Williams
    Alex Williams

    Each one of JWs has to do what his conscience dictates,JWs believe that blood removed from the body should be disposed of, so they do not accept autotransfusion of predeposited blood. Techniques for intraoperative collection or hemodilution that involve blood storage are objectionable to them. However, many Ws permit the use of dialysis and heart-lung equipment where the extracorporeal circulation is uninterrupted.
    The Ws do not feel that the Bible comments directly on organ transplants; so, decisions regarding transplants must be made by the individual Witness.The bible doesn't comment on smoking like you must not smoke cigarettes or you must not go to a casino or do not have a organ transplant they didn't exist as they do today but it has guide lines and principles where one should know by learning Gods mind what is acceptable.

    Since cardiovascular operations performed on Ws without transfusing blood and can be done with an acceptably low risk some JWs accept organ transplants


  • Vanderhoven7

    Yes ...but today, why is plasma banned by the WT and organ transplants not?

    And why are JW mothers not prohibited from nursing their babies?

  • TD

    Techniques for intraoperative collection or hemodilution that involve blood storage are objectionable to them.

    No they are not.

    Changes were made to these procedures years ago which rendered them acceptable to the majority of JW's (In both cases a small amount of blood is allowed to recirculate, so that the flow is not completely interrupted.)

    JW HLC's aggressively recommend cell saving technology today, even going so far as to donate money towards the purchase of equipment in some cases.

    Alex if you don't know what material has and has not become out of date, then you should quit trying to speak for all of JW's. It's irresponsible when you don't know what you are talking about.

    How about answering the questions that have been presented to you in your own words?

  • Alex Williams
    Alex Williams

    Techniques for intraoperative collection or hemodilution that involve blood storage are objectionable to them. Im not speaking for all JWs I said Each one of JWs has to do what his conscience dictates,

    Show the evidence,you just made a blank statement

  • Alex Williams
    Alex Williams

    Management of patients who refuse blood transfusion - NCBI

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nihIt may be acceptable to some JW if the blood is not stored .gov/pmc/articles/PMC4260316/
    Google blood storage and jehovah's witnesses
    Jehovah's Witnesses and BloodJehovah's Witnesses believe that the Bible prohibits ingesting blood and that Christians should not accept blood transfusions or donate or store their own blood for transfusion.

    Jehovah's Witnesses refuse blood transfusions, including autologous transfusions in which a person has their own blood stored to be used later in a medical procedure
    hemodilution that involve blood storage is different from during surgery
  • TD


    Show the evidence,you just made a blank statement

    What specifically are you having trouble believing?

    You quoted word for word out the JW publication How Can Blood Save Your Life? which in turn quoted word for word from a 1981 article appearing in The Journal of the American Medical Association (November 27, 1981, Volume 246, No. 21, pages 2471, 2472.)

    That information has been outdated for decades now. The March 1st 1989 issue of your own church publication, The Watchtower discussed both these procedures, (Intraoperative collection and hemodilution) stating that they were "matters of conscience."

    --And that was 30+ years ago.

    That JW's will accept treatment with CATS cell savers is common knowledge in the medical community today.

    That JW's have in some cases actually donated these machines is also common knowledge. Here's an example from the UK:

    --And that was 18 years ago

    Surely you don't think your church is donating expensive medical equipment for a procedure they find "objectionable?"

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