Well new to me anyway, I'm sure someone smarter than me has thought of this before.
The next time I get asked the perennial (and tired old) question: “But you do believe that the GB are God’s channel of communication, the organisation he is using, don’t you?” or some variation thereof, I am going to reply with two verses and reason as follows:
The matter to be established: Have the GB of Jehovah’s Witnesses received divine appointment to act as God’s representatives and channel of communication on earth?
The scriptures make very clear two important principles in establishing any important matter...
- Two, preferably three, witnesses are needed:
“This is the third time I am coming to you. ‘On the testimony of two or three witnesses every matter must be established.’” - 2 Corinthians 13:1
2. The witnesses need to be independent. The one making a claim cannot be a witness for oneself:
“If I alone bear witness about myself, my witness is not true. There is another who bears witness about me, and I know that the witness he bears about me is true. You have sent men to John, and he has borne witness to the truth. However, I do not accept the witness from man, but I say these things so that you may be saved... and the Father who sent me has himself borne witness about me.” - John 5:31-36
So, based on those two scriptural principles they claim to follow, all I ask is this: Do you have two or three independent witnesses you can present? If you do I would be happy to asses the testimony of those witnesses. Or is it the case that the GB bear witness about themselves?
The only possible comeback that I can anticipate to this is they might try and use the context, specifically John 5:39, to try and claim that the scriptures bear witness to the fact that the GB are divinely appointed because the GB are the only ones who truly follow/apply scripture properly. However, the reality is it is not the scriptures themselves, but the GB’s interpretation of them (specifically Matthew 24:45), and application of them to themselves. Therefore we are back to square one: They are testifying about themselves by applying scriptures to themselves. Good does not testify directly about them through the scriptures - an impossibility since they did not even exist when the scriptures were written!
Aside from the obvious that we all know (that JW’s can’t/won't critically think or reason, they will come up with a twisted way to explain anything) can you see any other pitfalls in this line of reasoning that I should be aware of/prepared for?
In my experience they will usually retreat to a fallback position at this stage: reliance on anecdotal & subjective (so-called) evidence, such as “blessings,” “growth,” “number of translation languages” etc etc, instead of actual witnesses. Those Bible principles will go out the window as irrelevant without a second thought.