Want Some Answers ???
Thanks for the reply. You wrote,
>>Dear Mark, Thanks for answering. I consider all things carefully. In regard to meetings it seems to me you miss the message. Yes meetings are important on this any bible taught Christian would agree. Hebrews 10:25. Certainly we would not want to make excuses, not to attend. If you are able why would you shun the association of other believers? But as I said it is my experience that if I am ill the only call I get is to check on my well being and wishes for a quick recovery. Then I don't make missing association a habit. I also feel a deep need to make public declaration of my faith among the congregation of God. Don't you? You should. One day in Jehovah's house is better than a hundred spent else where.<<
Interesting, because if they ‘check on’ you and you mustn’t “make excuses” the ‘recovery’ they expect is a return to work. As said, “Going to the meetings is vital, to miss them you must have good reason and sickness is NOT always acceptable”. And the WT - “It is just as essential to participate in the service of the Lord as it is to attend a meeting.”
For you “believers” and “congregation” mean 'the Society', obviously you're committed to them. The difference between my 'declaration of faith' and yours; is that yours is part of a package, in the hope of salvation. Whereas mine, is done - I am saved. But why claim 'faith' if you fail to worship in Spirit and truth? (Jn.4:24). Don’t worry about my 'declaration' because if your ‘faith’ doesn’t meet the Societies standard, they kick you out and say you are lost eternally.
>>A slave. We are all slaves. You choose. A slave to sin and death or a slave of my master. I personally recommend him For his yoke is kindly and his load is light. Jesus Christ is my master not the Watchtower bible and tract society. They in fact are fellow workers and brothers and sisters of mine.<<
If you don't obey the Master's command (Jn.3:3) you're not His slave but lost in sin. The Watchtower Society has deceived you into thinking you are Christ's 'slave' but you are theirs. There is a difference between a committed Christian and a committed JW. If Jesus is your Master, why not obey Him?
Slaves are "trying to please God by trying to obey - Commandments" [Gal.4:25LB]. In contrast, I'm not a "slave" but "free" [Gal.4:27]. Paul says, 'It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery' [Gal 5:1]. Slaves "will never share in the inheritance with the free" [Gal.4:30].
>>Saved, is past tense. I am still here in this wicked system of things. But I take the advise of Zephaniah 2:3. I plan on enduring to the end. Then I will be saved, because I know that God can not tell a lie. Obedience, my personal obedience is to my master Jesus Christ, my salvation is worked out through myself. John 17:3.<<
Note the three ‘tenses’ of salvation. It's spoken of in the past "were saved" [Rom.8:24 Rom.1.16 Lk.7.50 1 Cor.1.18 2 Tim.1.9] in the present "being saved" [1 Cor.1:18 2 Co.6.2 Lk.19.9] and in the future "will be saved" [1 Cor.3:15 Rom.13.11 1 Pe.1.5]. So I can say, “I have been saved, I’m being saved and I will be saved in the future”. The Society has fooled you into life long service for THEM and only then can you HOPE to be saved. Zep.2:3 is spoken to Israel not Christians and Jn.17:2-3 (cf.3:36) indicates that those 'born again' have ‘eternal life’ already.
Look at Titus 3:5 and Eph. 2:8-9, "He saved us [past tense] NOT because ANY works of righteousness that we have done but because of HIS own pity and MERCY by [the] cleansing [bath] of the NEW BIRTH [regeneration] and renewing of the Holy Spirit". "For it is by grace you HAVE BEEN saved, through faith--and this is NOT from yourselves, it is the GIFT of God - NOT by works, so that no one can boast."
>>The books that you are speaking of are bible study aids. Not a substitute for the bible its self. Hebrews 4:12. In fact the Watchtower society encourages all people to read God's word daily. We know that all scripture is inspired, and beneficial for teaching, reproving, setting things straight and for discipline. Wouldn't you agree?<<
And the Watchtower Society also indicate you cannot question their leadership or their teaching. They say if you don’t read the Watchtower's magazines and other material you won’t understand the Bible correctly. Then you will "fall into darkness" – what’s called reverting to normal Christianity. The 'study aids' are doctrinally corrupt of course.
Read the Bible without their 'study aids' and you will see the light. They have their own version to counter this problem - the NWT (well known for alterations). The Society claims the NWT is always right and never wrong. I’ve been studying Scripture for years and never found the doctrines the Society teaches. So what happens when the Watchtower Society and the Bible disagree? Who do you follow?
>>So you see, no one rules our hearts, or heads. The suggestions made by the society are kind and thoughtful, with a view to walking orderly, and modestly in accord with the Holy Scriptures.<<
You have yet to prove they don't “rule” you. The Bible says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God; this one was in the beginning with God” (Jn.1:1-2). The NWT wrongly alters the text to “was a god”. There's many places where the NWT changes the text, so is ‘the society…in accord with Scripture’? Who has the authority?
>>Even the first century Christian congregation made mistakes and needed to be refined. That does not make the organization itself unuseful. Jehovah (this is the name of the one true God) has always used imperfect humans to fulfill his divine purpose.<<
The ‘first century Christians’ are not the same as the Watchtower Society. The Society has nothing but scorn and venom for Christianity and continual criticism. They teach Christian churches are of the devil and salvation is impossible outside the Society. And ‘mistakes’? The Society have falsely predicted the end of the world five times. And have just changed a major Watchtower prediction that the end of the world would come before the generation of Witnesses born before 1914 died. All this from those that claim to be Jehovah’s one true voice on earth. It’s not ‘imperfect humans’ that make a useless organization, but corrupt doctrine and false prophecies.
>>Commitment. I never committed to the Watchtower I acknowledged its use in the service of my God. I commit only to my God and his son and my king. Are you telling me I am not worth saving? I thought only Jehovah made that choice. Since only he can read the heart. Yes I do fall short. I confess my sin, and do repent, through my actions I do not practice what is bad. I know that without the sacrifice of Jesus I would die, but he died for me, yes all mankind, yet I do fall short of the glory of God. I am ok with that, Jehovah values a crushed and broken heart. Maybe he thinks I am worth saving.<<
Unknown to you, the Watchtower Society has taught you that knowing God, the Bible, repentance, guilt, good works, witnessing, etc are all related to the Watchtower Society. They have you thinking that without them you are lost eternally. And they are the one true church with the one true gospel.
The words, God, repent, sin, salvation, etc have a different meaning in Scripture, the Society has reinterpreted them. So though you claim ‘Jehovah is master’ in reality the Watchtower Society is master. If not, then why go door to door handing out the Watchtower and Awake magazines for the Society thinking that’s God’s work? They tell you what to say, what to think, to work hard and you obey.
>>I am not unevenly yoked. But I do pay constant attention to myself , so that I do not drift away.I love my Christian family. and the world is in the power of the wicked one, I know that bad association does spoil useful habits and am careful of who I spend my time with. Aren't you?<<
If you are asking me to agree with the Societies ideas of shunning ex-JW’s, outsiders, youth clubs, football games, large gatherings, YMCA, etc, well, I hardly agree with them about anything. The Bible is different to what they say. But they control you and any association is deemed ‘bad’ if it doesn’t comply to their requirements. Sad to see you so blinded by them; they fool so many.
>>Multi cultural club is at school, yes we go to school. It is hard to give a witness for the hope in you if you are not in the world. We are in the world but no part of it. This is an identifying mark of the true disciples of Christ. Also that we have love among ourselves.<<
Regarding the club, I’m not surprised you break with the absurd Society regulations. Every JW written to me so far, criticize Society rules, claiming to ignore some. It must be a nightmare trying to bring up kids and please the Society, telling them 'no birthdays', 'no special days' that the Society doesn’t agree with.
The ‘identifying mark of a true disciple of Christ’ is the ‘new birth’ (a Spiritual birth) and they know who Christ is (Mt.16:15). A true disciple knows Christ is the ‘mighty God’, “the Everlasting father” (Isa.7:14 9:6 43:10). So the Watchtower Society helps no one become a true Christian.
>>That is why I answered the slanders you lay down. Misinformation is as good as a lie. I can not think of anything more offensive than to be called a hypocrite. My coworkers who are not witnesses find me unshakable in my Christian neutrality, my devotion to my God, and the application, of scriptural counsel. When asked for a personal opinion I always use the word of God as my code of conduct. As far as principles of conscience I am answerable only to Jehovah God. I consider the stumbling my actions my cause and always make my choices a matter of prayer. Don't you?
“Slanders….Misinformation? No, I have over 40 WatchTower books, Yearbooks from 2002-1970, all the WatchTower / Awake mags from 1955 which one do you want me to quote? You label yourself a 'hypocrite' by claiming to ignore the Society rules about clubs. No lies, I mentioned those WatchTower articles which warn to avoid clubs - Watchtower 1997 6/1 p.4. WT 1992 8/15 p18. WT 1979 1/1 p31. WT 1973 2/1 p73 WT 1966 7/15 p421".
As for your ‘devotion…code of conduct’. It sounds nice, yet similar words of loyalty to Bible and God are echoed by Mormons, Christadelphian’s, Catholics etc. And if we get into a Bible discussion, very quickly we will see the Society has your loyalty. Your ‘devotion to God’ is equal only to your ‘dedication’ to the Society.
>>This letter has much troubled me, there is nothing like a stranger telling you what you think and feel and how you act. Then to explain to you why. I have studied for many years different religious beliefs before I became a Witness. No, not just a witness, but a minister of Jehovah God. Totally dedicated to the doing of his will, a vessel of Holy spirit and a bible student.<<
Was that research independently of the Society? This is important especially since they claim to be the only organization with the truth. And they tell you that any outside information about them is evil and not to read it. I’ve also studied various religions, doesn’t it make you eager to share what know? Why don’t we do a study by email? I suspect your idea of ‘years of study’ is reading the WT magazine and doing your weekly book studies.
>>Many ex-JW's are EX-JW's because they have like a dog returned to the vomit, or like a pig to the mire. I am sorry for that, but I will continue to endure, until the return of my king and the end of this system of things. I pray that the Kingdom comes and the will of Jehovah takes place on the entire earth for ever and ever. In the name of our great and powerful king and redeemer Jesus Christ. Amen, and Amen. Peace. S.<<
The Society is well known for shunning those who leave or are excommunicated and even families suffer. Some are ‘ex-JW’s’ because with the Bible, they discovered the Society has corrupt doctrine. So the Society warns you to avoid ex-JW's and reading their literature. As for the 'kingdom' Jesus said you "cannot enter", if you are not 'born again' (Jn.3:5). So I 'pray' you come to know the truth.