Visit From Jehovah's Witnesses
Nicolau: - "There is a smug hypocrisy amongst many believers on this forum in that having seen so clearly the fallacies and errors of their former JW beliefs they can now pontificate about 'accurate' bible truths."
Bro Nic - Please elaborate a bit more on this cos I thought Van of the Courts was just relating his experience, given that the "hidden agenda" of door knockin JW's whether they realise it or not is to change ones whole way of life and thinking - and not allow you any wiggle room once you're in the "inner sanctum" - Geoffrey Jackass of Oz's testimony at the ARC was Pontificous [if there is such a word] Now that was smug ! And Hypocritical !
The impression I get from you [its just an impression...so remain.....C a l m ....breathe ] is that you are in attack mode here - not sure why.
To me being "free" of JW dot Org is a reason to celebrate - so if Bro and Sis R&S could get to think beyond the veil of indoctrination it would be a massive release for them - as it was for me !
Hi, Sorry for the delay...but while things are fresh in my mind.
Here is the printout I gave them before they left after our first visit:
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EXEGESIS VS EISEGESIS (proper vs improper interpretation)
The difference between exegesis and eisegesis (ice se gee' sis)?: The word exegesis literally means “to lead out of.” That means that the interpreter is led to his conclusions by following the text. The opposite approach to Scripture is eisegesis. The word eisegesis literally means “to lead into,” which means the interpreter injects his own ideas into the text, making it mean whatever he wants. Eisegesis invariably represents interpretive abuse
BASIC GUIDELINES FOR VALIDATING DOCTRINAL CLAIMS
i. There must be at least one scriptural reference that can
be cited for support of any doctrinal claim or position.
ii. Scriptural references must not be tampered with
added to, deleted from, or have words substituted or
iii. Scriptural references are considered arbitrarily linked
unless it is shown that subject or content is clearly related.
iv. Interpretations of biblical passages must take into
consideration, context, including textual, situational
cultural and historical contexts.
WHAT I BELIEVE ABOUT THE RELIGION OF JEHOVAH'S WITNESSES
I believe the religion of Jehovah's Witnesses is not biblical. By that I mean, that every doctrine that is original and unique to Jehovah's Witnesses is extra-biblical - determined by eisegesis rather than exegesis.
WHAT I AM PREPARED TO STUDY WITH JEHOVAH'S WITNESSES
Answer: Every doctrine which is absolutely unique to Jehovah's Witnesses, including:
Matthew 24 - Was Jesus talking about the 1914 generation in Matthew 24:34?
- Did Jesus appoint certain men in New York in 1919 to be His F&DS?
Revelation 7 - Are there Christians since 1935 who are not Spirit-begotten and heaven bound?
Acts 15 - Does Acts 15 outlaw blood transfusions?
Acts 20:20 - Are Christians required to go door-to-door with the gospel message?
Gospel - What are the requirements for salvation and Christian baptism?
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Stephen and Ruth agreed to study Matthew 24 with particular emphasis on the first 2 questions above. And that is largely what we talked about yesterday.
to be continued
On the first visit R&S vigorously made some rather off-putting claims
1. There would be no repercussions if they disagreed with any official WTS doctrine...even if they no longer held onto their belief about the 1919 appointment of the F&DS (I actually gasped here but let it go otherwise)
2. They both affirmed that they talk to Jesus every day....after I suggested JWs can't have a biblically normative relationship with Jesus Christ. (I let this go as well)
As we started meeting number 2 I said I wanted to review what we had discussed previously. I mentioned the four exegetical criteria for validating doctrinal assertions which they agreed would reduce doctrinal error and claimed their religion followed. And I reminded them that they agreed that the so-called Mormon interpretation of Matthew 13:44 represented interpretive abuse. Then I moved to pin them down by saying
What was established last week but was not acknowledged, is that your religion is founded on the exact same kind of interpretive abuse. Will you acknowledge that today? (No response)
Is it written or is it beyond what is written in the Bible to say that Matthew 13:44 is about Joseph Smith, 1827 gold plates, and a field in upper state NY? (agreed it is not biblical)
OK...Is it written or is it beyond what is written in the Bible to say that the sounding of the seven trumpets of Revelation 8 got under way in 1922 at a Bible student convention held at Cedar Point Ohio when Brother Rutherford gave a life-changing talk.
Immediately Stephen went into "change the subject mode" (he refused to answer the question until I looked up a scripture). He brought me to Jude verse 9 which he read substituting Jesus name for Michael. He assured me this had something to do with answering my question. (Huh?) Who is the arch-angel he demanded? Michael, I responded. Who is Michael? he asked. The arch-angel I replied. I then told him that he would have to add Jesus name to the text to make it say Jesus. Notice he said, that Michael didn't judge the devil, but left it to God...so I shouldn't judge other Christians beliefs. I pointed out that we are called to judge beliefs by the scriptures...(they are there for correction 2 Tim.3:16) like the Bereans did... now will you answer my question. He still scooted around and finally I told him that his religion judges other Christians and their beliefs and has assigned all other church members to be eternally destroyed at Armageddon. Stephen and Ruth totally denied this assertion. So I figured it was time to bring out their literature.
Sorry for the details here, but I want you to get a feel for their evasion tactics.
to be continued...wife wants the computer...later
That's great information on Eisegesis vs Exegesis, Vanderhoven. I look forward to your further updates on your interactions with Stephen and Ruth.
By the way, here's an interesting and revealing exercise to pursue: apply the standards of good exegesis to NT passages that quote and interpret OT passages as being prophecies pertaining to christ. Are the NT authors applying sound exegesis. To me it seems like they're applying "I-see-Jesus". lol.
Interesting topic, thanks for sharing. Looking forward to the rest of the story.
Well we finally got into Matthew 24. Stephen tried to prove Christ returned in Oct. 1914 by asking me what happened in 1914. I told him WWI started in 1914 but in August before the devil was allegedly cast out of heaven in October. He referred me to the alleged composite sign of earthquakes, famines epidemics were on the increase since 1914. I told him the opposite was true; that the 50 years prior to 1914 had experienced more deaths due to earthquakes, famines and epidemics than the 50 years afterwards (despite significant increases in world population). I offered to show him proof (not mentioning Carl Olof Jonsson's book "Sign of the Last Days -When?) but he ignored the offer. I explained that the tribulation was past (A.D. 70) local, (Jerusalem and Judaea). He countered with there is a dual fulfillment. I asked him to read verse 21 of Matthew 24 to show this was not true. He had no counter argument.
I asked him how old the youngest person in the 1914 generation was today. He didn't want to go there either. I explained that there are only 2 meanings/uses for the word generation in the gospels; one to denote one set of parents to the next, and the other to refer to people living contemporaneously. Every use of "this generation" applied to Jesus' contemporaries/people then living. I pulled out an old 1995 AWAKE...and immediately he asked when was that written? I said 1995. He waved his arm and said throw it away. We don't believe that (what) anymore. I told him his organization had attributed lying words to Jehovah for years...and started to read the alleged promise God made to bring about a peaceful new order before the 1914 generation passed away. He wasn't listening. You will never become a Jehovah Witness will you, he said. I said, not if I have to accept extra-biblical teachings.
We never got to the F&DS being selected in 1919 (got lots of questions on that score)
I wanted to challenge Stephen on his statement that there was freedom of belief without repercussion. He affirmed that he was free to believe anything he wanted. And something else both affirmed vigorously; that other churches are not part of satan's organization and that JWs don't believe they would be destroyed at Armageddon because they were associated with Christendom. LOL he even said, we are not the only true religion. More gasps on my part...but this time I would not let it go.
So I pulled out some of their literature which he tried to discourage me from reading by asking for a date and saying that's old teaching...before even hearing a word. You can throw that out...(more throw arm waving)
Cant wait to hear their overlapping explaination...
This is interesting Vanderhoven. The JWs aren't in the least bothered about earlier teachings but I didn't realise that they are only accepting as far back as what is currently online, which is to the year 2000.
The way you are highlighting the illogical and misleading teachings of the witnesses, using THEIR OWN bible and publications is masterful.
I find a nice polite thank you but no thank you before shutting the door wastes a lot less of my time tbh.
Trying to reason with them or trying to make them see sense is akin to don quixote tilting at windmills.