Who is the mediator for jehovahs witnesses?

by atomant 101 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • vienne

    Listener, If you read what I wrote. you see I am not approving of the WT. All I am saying is that words matter and that they have been miss-defined in this thread. If we wish to refute the WT then we must do it accurately. That means defining mediator and propitiate as the Bible does. That's not been done here.

    Some posters have confused the two. I do not suggest that Watchtower soteriology is correct. I do suggest that the bible defines jesus as mediator of a covenant. That's separate from his work as priestly intercessor or as John as it as propitiating priest.

    I do not disagree that Witnesses believe they have the one true faith. I do not assert that they do. We will not get any sort of apology from someone we misrepresent. We need to state their doctrine faithfully to refute it. Confusing Jesus two offices does not do that.

  • the girl next door
    the girl next door


    Who is the mediator for Jehovah’s Witnesses?

    Watchtower says Jesus is mediator for just the 144,000 anointed.

    "So in this strict Biblical sense Jesus is the "mediator" only for anointedChristians." Watchtower 1979 Apr 1 p.31
    "Likewise, the Greater Moses, Jesus Christ, is not the Mediator between Jehovah God and all mankind. He is the Mediator between his heavenly Father, Jehovah God, and the nation of spiritual Israel, which is limited to only 144,000 members." Worldwide Security Under the "Prince of Peace"(1986) pp.10-11
  • the girl next door
    the girl next door


    If Jesus is only mediator for the few thousand remaining remnant on earth, who is mediator for the millions of Jehovah's Witnesses that do not form part of the 144,000?

    "The "great crowd" of "other sheep" that is forming today is not in that new covenant. However, by their associating with the "little flock" of those yet in that covenant they come under benefits that flow from that new covenant." Watchtower 1979 Apr 1 p.31
    "They recognize that they are not spiritual Israelites in the new covenant mediated by Jesus Christ, nor part of the "chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation."-1 Pet. 2:9. Yet they do benefit from the operation of the new covenant. They benefit from this just as, in ancient Israel, the "alien resident" benefited from residing in among the Israelites who were in the Law covenant.-Ex. 20:10; Lev. 19:10, 33, 34; Rev. 7:9-15. To keep in relationship with "our Savior, God," the "great crowd" needs to remain united with the remnant of spiritual Israelites." Watchtower 1979 Nov 15 p.27 Benefiting from "One Mediator Between God and Men"
  • the girl next door
    the girl next door


    Where is Jesus in that statement?

    The 2010 book God's Word For Us Through Jeremiah continues to present this teaching, though so subtly that many Jehovah's Witnesses do not seem to make the connection that Jesus is not their mediator. It explains that Jesus mediates for the new covenant, which is for spiritual Israel, whom the Watchtower teach include only the 144,000.

    "... the new covenant is between Jehovah God and spiritual Israel, with Jesus as its Mediator." God's Word For Us Through Jeremiah p.173

    Under the heading of Mediator in Watchtower Index 1986-2000, there is the subheading "for anointed only:".

    This remained the case in the 2016 index online at wol.jw.org Watchtower Index 1986-2016 .

    Most congregations no longer have any of the "little flock" to associate with and the reality for Jehovah's Witnesses is that salvation comes from following the Governing Body, the leaders of the Organization. Jesus role as mediator for the Anointed alone is used to underpin the concept that following the directions of the Governing Body is necessary for salvation.

  • the girl next door
    the girl next door


    It is common for a cult to claim their leaders mediate for the followers, as emphasised by leading cult researcher, Steven Hassan.

    "Mystical manipulation can take on a special quality in these cults because the leaders become mediators for God. The God-centered principles can be put forcibly and claimed exclusively, so that the cult and its beliefs become the only true path to salvation." Combating Cult Mind Control, Steven Hasssan, p.202

    In Christianity, Jesus is the mediator through which all mankind have freedom to approach God. The Apostle Paul puts it simply:

    1 Timothy 2:5,6 "For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, a man, Christ Jesus, who gave himself a corresponding ransom for all."

    Jesus alone is our mediator and Paul does not limit who this opportunity is available to. In order to heighten their own authority, cult leaders disregard this concept when assuming the role of mediator upon themselves, using a range of explanations to undermine Paul's statement. With this in mind, it is important to understand the Watchtower Doctrine on the Mediator.

  • the girl next door
    the girl next door

    Follow the yellow brick road.

  • vienne

    You still miss the point. In Witness theology and in the New Testament Jesus is mediator of the new covenant. Nothing in what you quoted shows that the 'anointed' or the governing body are mediators. You still confuse Jesus' office as propitiator with his office as mediator. Your quotation does show that Witnesses believe they are the one true religion. They believe that if you leave their religion - since it is the one true religion in their belief - then you reject Jesus' ransom. Nonsense of course. But the WT does not teach that they are mediators.

    They teach, and this much is biblical, that Jesus fills two offices. Jesus is a covenant mediator. He is the high priest, who propitiates God in behalf of all men. [1 Jn 2:2; 4:10] You are right in rejecting Witness theology. You are wrong in your terminology, in your definition of Witness doctrine. Witnesses see Christ as the propitiator between God and all men.

    Most who object to Witness mediator doctrine think that the mediator represents them to God and covers their sins. That's not the mediatorial office. Jesus' mediation was of the New Covenant. The Bible says this. Witnesses believe that only a few are in that covenant. Even if so, all men benefit by Jesus' office as propitator. Witnesses do not teach that salvation comes by others than Christ. They do teach that they have the one true faith. That's improbable, but other religions see themselves as the one true faith too. They're not exceptional in this.

    Broken down into its components, Witness doctrine does not deny salvation to some 'great crowd'. They deny that these are in the New Covenant. As I see it, all Christians are in the New Covenant and Witness doctrine comes not from the Bible but from mid 19th Century teaching by an Anglican and by a Brethren preacher. I oppose their doctrine. But if we wish to refute it, we must be exact in our terminology or we persuade no one but those who already reject their doctrine.

  • the girl next door
    the girl next door


    The Watchtower contains an inconsistent view of the mediator. Christians generally believe that Jesus sacrifice for forgiveness of sins is offered to all mankind, and comes from his role as both Mediator and High Priest of the New Covenant. However the Watchtower view is quite unique in that it separates Jesus role for different classes;

    • Mediator only for the 144,000
    • High Priest on behalf of all
    "He mediates the new covenant between God and those taken into the new covenant, the congregation of spiritual Israel. The total number of those who are finally and permanently sealed is revealed in Revelation 7:4-8 as 144,000." Insight on the Scriptures, Volume 2 p.362 Mediator

    The Watchtower states that whilst Jesus is mediator for 144,000 only, those not under the new covenant will be blessed by Jesus through his role as their High Priest.

    "Blessings to Mankind in General. While Jesus' mediatorship operates solely toward those in the new covenant, he is also God's High Priest and the Seed of Abraham. In fulfilling his duties in these latter two positions, he will bring blessings to others of mankind, for all the nations are to be blessed by means of Abraham's seed." Insight on the Scriptures, Volume 2p.362 Mediator
    "Christ does not act as Mediator of the new covenant toward them, yet they benefit from this covenant through the work of God's Kingdom. Christ still acts toward them, however, as High Priest, through whom Jehovah can and does apply the ransom to the extent of their now being declared righteous as God's friends. (Compare James 2:23.)" Watchtower 1991 Feb 15 p.18

    There is no Scriptural precedent to support the idea that the Mediator can be for a different group than that of the High Priest, or that the High Priest atoned for people not under covenant.

    If the 144,000 are supposed to prefigure the kings and priests and also prefigure the entire nation of spiritual Israel, then who are they to rule?

    The Watchtower parallels the Great Crowd with the Alien residents under the Law covenant.

    "Since a number of these faithful foreigners, or alien residents, are viewed as foreshadowing the great crowd today, their situation is of interest to us.
    Such ones were proselytes, dedicated worshipers of Jehovah under the Mosaic Law who were separated from the nations along with the Israelites. (Leviticus 24:22) They offered sacrifices, kept clear of false worship, and abstained from blood, just as the Israelites did." Watchtower 1995 Jul 1 p.17 "The Israel of God" and the "Great Crowd"

    As the Great Crowd are said to be foreshadowed by the alien resident then it follows that the Great Crowd are included in the New Covenant in the same way alien residents were included in the Law Covenant.

  • the girl next door
    the girl next door


    Why does the Watchtower claim Jesus is only Mediator for the 144,000?

    The history of the development of this concept provides the answer. The Watchtower did not always teach this distasteful doctrine. Russell taught that the role of Mediator was extended to all mankind.

    Russell appears to have been thoroughly confused about the role of mediator. At times he felt that the 144,000 were not under the new covenant, at other times that they were under the New Covenant. When he taught that they were not under the New Covenant it followed that they did not need a mediator and that they (along with Jesus) played role of mediator for mankind.

    • Up to 1880 Russell taught that Jesus and the body of Christ (the 144,000) mediated for mankind, so the 144,000 were not included in the New Covenant.

    "“It should be remembered that we are in him heirs of glory, not under the “new covenant,” which is still future, but in the ‘Abrahamic covenant."” Zion's Watch Tower 1880 Feb p.72

    • Russell changed his mind and from 1881 to 1907 said the Church is included in the New Covenant

    "In a sense, the operation of the new covenant begins with the Gospel church and lifts us from the plane of degradation and sin-to a justified or reckoned perfect condition, from which we can go forward in the “narrow way,” becoming heirs of the first covenant."” Zion's Watch Tower 1881 Sep p.151

    • In 1907, Russell re-introduced his teaching that the “new covenant” is not made with the church at all.”

    "It was very inconsistent for us to quote in one breath the Apostle's statement that we are members of the Isaac Seed, the children of the old, original Covenant, and then in the next breath to class ourselves as beneficiaries of the New Covenant." Zion's Watch Tower 1909 Jan 1 p.12 (See also Zion's Watch Tower 1909 Apr 1 p.110)

    At least Russell believed Jesus role of mediator was for all mankind.

    "Jesus will occupy this mediatorial relationship between God and men until he shall have accomplished fully the intended work-until he shall have brought back into full harmony with God every creature who, being brought to a knowledge of his Creator and his righteous laws, shall desire to be and to do in complete harmony therewith."Studies in the Scriptures - The New Creation p.398

    To coincide with his moving the Great Crowd from heaven to earth Rutherford made an almost opposite claim that the New Covenant only applied to the 144,000. In 1934 Rutherford limited who Jesus could mediate for to just the 144,000 Spiritual Israelites.

    "Christ Jesus is the mediator of the new covenant toward his own brethren, that is to say, spiritual Israel, during the period of time God is taking out from the nations a people for his name."Watchtower 1934 Apr 1 p.104 Click for scan

    It was during this period that Rutherford introduced the concept that only 144,000 go to heaven. The Watchtower was forced into the position of limiting the new covenant to the 144,000 because the Bible states that those under the covenant receive a heavenly resurrection.

    Hebrews 10:16-22 "'This is the covenant that I shall covenant toward them after those days,' says Jehovah. 'I will put my laws in their hearts, and in their minds I shall write them,'" 17 [it says afterwards:] "And I shall by no means call their sins and their lawless deeds to mind anymore." 18 Now where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer an offering for sin. 19 Therefore, brothers, since we have boldness for the way of entry into the holy place by the blood of Jesus, 20 which he inaugurated for us as a new and living way through the curtain, that is, his flesh, 21 and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us approach with true hearts in the full assurance of faith, having had our hearts sprinkled from a wicked conscience and our bodies bathed with clean water.. . .
    1 Corinthians 15:51-57 "We shall not all fall asleep [in death], but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, during the last trumpet. … The sting producing death is sin, but the power for sin is the Law."

    Being determined to prove that only 144,000 go to heaven the Watchtower had no alternative than say that the New Covenant only applies to the 144,000. The Watchtower removed Jesus from being mankind's Mediator in order to support an inaccurate doctrine, that of an earthly resurrection. There is not a single scripture that discusses an earthly resurrection.

    The introduction of these teachings was a critical turning point for the Watchtower Society. Even as the number of Jehovah's Witnesses grew over 144,000 Rutherford could have continued with Russell's teaching, allowing additional followers to be part of a heavenly Great Crowd. By sending the Great Crowd to earth and allowing only Jehovah's Witnesses to be part of it Rutherford was able to introduce the concept of narrow salvation. Russell's idea that the majority of mankind were to survive Armageddon could be extinguished. Salvation became dependant solely on belonging to the Watchtower Society. This use of control has continued ever since.

    From that time forward the leaders of the Watchtower Society, as part of Spiritual Israel, could demand unquestioning obedience from the secondary class of other sheep.

    "All of this should impress upon the minds of the other sheep why the Christian Greek Scriptures focus so much attention on Christ and his anointed brothers and their central role in the outworking of Jehovah's purposes. The other sheep therefore consider it a privilege to support in every way possible the anointed slave class while awaiting "the revealing of the sons of God" at Armageddon and during the Millennium. They can look forward to being "set free from enslavement to corruption and have the glorious freedom of the children of God."-Romans 8:19-21." Watchtower2002 Feb 1 p. 23
    "But that does not necessarily mean that they are marked for survival. They must be marked by the 'man with the secretary's inkhorn.' The facts show that "the faithful and discreet slave" class is doing that marking work today.-Matthew 24:45-47. All who want to be marked as having God's approval must accept the instruction that Jehovah is providing through that "slave" class and become true worshipers of Jehovah." Survival into a New Earth p.96

    The resultant conclusion of Watchtower doctrine is that the Governing Body have elevated their role to that of mediators themselves.

    "With Christ they make up the agency by means of which blessings will be extended to all other obedient ones among mankind. Appreciation of this is a key to understanding the Bible." Survival into a New Earth p. 65
    "Being made kings and priests by reason of the new covenant that he mediated, they will share in administering the blessings of Jesus' sacrifice and of his Kingdom rule to all the nations of the earth. Christ's mediatorship, having accomplished its purpose by bringing "the Israel of God" into this position, thus results in benefits and blessings to all mankind." Insight on the Scriptures, Volume 2p.363 Mediator
  • the girl next door
    the girl next door


    The Watchtower Society uses an eisegesis approach to arrive at doctrine; that is, it creates a doctrine and then manipulates scriptures to support it. This requires resorting to rhetorical fallacy to convince people what they are saying is true.

    A classic example of this is in a 1989 article explaining why Jesus is not mediator for all mankind. Following are some quotes;

    "Is Jesus the Mediator only for spirit-anointed Christians or for all mankind, since 1 Timothy 2:5, 6 speaks of him as the "mediator" who "gave himself a corresponding ransom for all"?

    The Bible contains both basic teachings and deep truths, which are solid food for study. ...

    To grasp what Paul is saying, we must first appreciate that the Bible sets out two destinies for faithful humans: (1) perfect life on a restored earthly paradise and (2) life in heaven for Christ's "little flock," numbering 144,000.

    ... The Greek word me.si'tes ...

    Clearly, then, the new covenant is not a loose arrangement open to all mankind. It is a carefully arranged legal provision involving God and anointed Christians.

    This should help us to understand 1 Timothy 2:5, 6. Here the reference to "mediator" was made after the five other occurrences of the word in letters written earlier. Hence, Timothy would have understood Jesus' mediatorship to be His legal role connected with the new covenant. ...

    Consequently, 1 Timothy 2:5, 6 is not using "mediator" in the broad sense common in many languages. It is not saying that Jesus is a mediator between God and all mankind. ... The apostle John referred to these at 1 John 2:2. But he indicated that others too will receive the benefit of Christ's sacrifice: "He is a propitiatory sacrifice for our sins, yet not for ours only but also for the whole world's."

    Those of 'the whole world' are all who will gain eternal life in a restored earthly paradise. Millions of such approved servants of God now have that earthly hope...." Watchtower 1989 Aug 15 pp.30-31

    The article starts saying this is solid food, indicating that if you don't agree with or understand the conclusion you are spiritually immature. It then shows that in order to understand the role of the Mediator another Watchtower doctrine must be believed. However no Scripture is given to back up the doctrine that humans will be resurrected onto earth, as there is no Scripture that makes such a statement. In fact, when Revelation 7 and 19 discusses the Great Crowd it places them in heaven "before" the throne. (See Paradise Earth and Great Crowd) The doctrine of the Mediator is built upon this shaky foundation.

    There follows lengthy inclusion of Greek definitions. This seems to be a diversionary attempt to give an air of authority to the article, as the discussion has no bearing on the existence of a secondary class or answering the original question.

    The article next attempts to add weight by inclusion of a commonly used Watchtower word - "clearly". This term is constantly used in Watchtower articles to reinforce a questionable point. The writer also claims to be privy to what "Timothy would have understood".

    Not content with limiting the mediatorship to only 144,000 people, the article goes on to add that the propitiatory sacrifice, which the Bible says is for the "whole world's" sins, only applies to those that gain life in the earthly paradise. Since the Watchtower teaches billions will die at Armageddon without any hope of a resurrection, it is excluding all worldly people alive from the value of the sacrifice as well.

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