Skip to comments.Essays for Lent/Easter: Jehovah's Witnesses
Posted on 04/26/2012 9:19:07 PM PDT by Salvation
by Sebastian R. Fama Jehovah's Witnesses claim to be "God's Visible Organization." They also claim to be "His prophet." They say that Jesus inspected their organization in 1919 and found a "faithful and discreet slave class, dispensing fine spiritual food to true believers" (Yearbook 1975, page 88). So what type of spiritual food have they been dispensing? In "The Finished Mystery" published in 1917, they claimed that in 1918 God would destroy the churches and church members by the millions, and Christendom would go down into oblivion that year. They also predicted that there would be worldwide anarchy in the fall of 1920. In 1920 they claimed that the Bible foretold the resurrection of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and other faithful ones of old. It was written that they would arrive in 1925 (Millions Now Living Will Never Die, page 81). They have predicted that the world would end in 1914, 1918, 1920, 1925, 1941, and 1975. Obviously none of their predictions have come true. Are we to believe that this is "fine spiritual food?"
Jehovah's Witnesses claim to be "God's Visible Organization." They also claim to be "His prophet." They say that Jesus inspected their organization in 1919 and found a "faithful and discreet slave class, dispensing fine spiritual food to true believers" (Yearbook 1975, page 88). So what type of spiritual food have they been dispensing? In "The Finished Mystery" published in 1917, they claimed that in 1918 God would destroy the churches and church members by the millions, and Christendom would go down into oblivion that year. They also predicted that there would be worldwide anarchy in the fall of 1920. In 1920 they claimed that the Bible foretold the resurrection of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and other faithful ones of old. It was written that they would arrive in 1925 (Millions Now Living Will Never Die, page 81). They have predicted that the world would end in 1914, 1918, 1920, 1925, 1941, and 1975. Obviously none of their predictions have come true. Are we to believe that this is "fine spiritual food?"
They don't vote in elections, and they won't salute the flag or serve in the armed forces. They teach that it is wrong to celebrate birthdays, Christmas and Easter. They believe that Jesus and Michael the Archangel are one and the same.
Ricarda Bradford was seriously injured in an automobile accident. She was in desperate need of a blood transfusion. Her father, a devout Jehovah's Witness, refused to allow it, as Witnesses believe that the Bible prohibits blood transfusions. As a result, Ricarda died on her sixth birthday. Many of their teachings, such as this one, are arrived at by taking Bible verses out of context. When they are shown Bible verses that contradict their theology, their responses generally imply that the Bible doesn't really mean what it says.
Jehovah's Witnesses are taught that the doctrine of the Trinity is a false one. But even their version of the Bible disagrees. In Genesis 1:26 God says, "Let us make man in our image." In the next verse we read that "God proceeded to make man in His image." So God alone created man, and yet more than one person was involved. This is the doctrine of the Trinity. It is true that in some places the Scriptures speak of Jesus as being subordinate to the Father, but this is perfectly natural and necessary to the Christian view. Jesus is fully human and fully divine. In His human nature He is subject to the Father. In His divine nature He is equal to the Father.
Jesus' divinity is illustrated in John 2:18-21, where we read, "Therefore, in answer, the Jews said to Him, 'What sign have you to show us, since you are doing these things?' In answer Jesus said to them, 'Break down this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.' Therefore the Jews said, 'This temple was built in forty-six years, and you will raise it up in three days?' But He was talking about the temple of His body." Acts 5:30 tells us that "The God of our forefathers raised up Jesus." So the Bible tells us that Jesus raised His own dead body. It also tells us that the one who raised Him was God. Therefore Jesus is God.
Isaiah 9:6 predicts the birth of Jesus. Note what it calls Him: "For there has been a child born to us, there has been a son given to us, and the princely rule will come to be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace."
Jehovah's Witnesses are taught that the Holy Spirit is not a person but God's active force. He is likened to "electricity, a force that can be adapted to perform a great variety of operations." But this is not what the Bible teaches. The Bible not only tells us that the Holy Spirit is a person, but a divine one as well. In Acts 13:2 we read, "As they were ministering to Jehovah and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, 'Of all persons set Barnabas and Saul apart for me for the work to which I have called them.'" And again, "The Holy Spirit aptly spoke through Isaiah the prophet" (Acts 28:25). If the Holy Spirit is an impersonal force, how is it that it can speak and refer to itself in a personal way?
The divinity of the Holy Spirit is revealed in Acts 5:3-4: "But Peter said, 'Ananias, why has Satan emboldened you to play false to the Holy Spirit You have played false not to men, but to God.'"
Jehovah's Witnesses claim that the doctrine of the Trinity derives no support from any Christian writers for three centuries after the birth of Christ (Should You Believe in the Trinity, page 7). Among the early writers mentioned are Tertullian, Origen and Theophilus of Antioch. However, Tertullian wrote, "And at the same time the mystery of the oikonomia is safeguarded, for the unity is distributed in a trinity. Placed in order, the three are the Father, the Son, and the Spirit" (Against Praxeas 2:1, 213 AD).
Origen wrote, "For we do not hold that which the heretics imagine, that some part of the substance of God was converted into the Son, or that the Son was procreated by the Father from non-existent substances, that is, from a substance outside Himself, so that there was a time when He [the Son] did not exist For it is the Trinity alone which exceeds every sense in which not only temporal but even eternal may be understood. It is all other things, indeed, which are outside the Trinity, which are to be measured by time and ages" (On First Principles 4:4:1, 220 AD).
Finally, Theophilus of Antioch: "The three days before the luminaries were created are types of the Trinity, God, His Word, and His Wisdom" (Ad Autolycus 2:15, 181 AD).
Jehovah's Witness theology concerning hell is also problematic. They teach that the Biblical terms used to describe hell are merely symbolic; that after death the damned will no longer exist. The idea of eternal torment is flatly rejected. But the Scriptures teach otherwise. In Matthew 25:41 we read, "Then He will say, in turn, to those on his left, 'Be on your way from me, you who have been cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the Devil and his angels.'" Notice how the everlasting fire is a place that was prepared. If it were not an actual place, no preparation would be needed. Further evidence is found in Revelation 21:8: "But as for the cowards and those without faith, and those who are disgusting in their filth, and murderers and fornicators, and those practicing Spiritism and idolaters, and all the liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur. This means the second death." There could only be a second death if those in question were still in existence after the first one.
Hell-fire cannot be symbolic of non-existence, as it would defeat the purpose of symbolism. The purpose of symbolism is to teach by way of illustration. Whenever symbolic language is used, there is always a parallel principle involved. For instance, if I said that I had an ocean of water in my basement, would you think that it was flooded or bone dry? Most people would think that it was flooded. An ocean is a large body of water, so it would symbolize an excessive amount of water. It would never be used to describe an absence of water. Similarly, hell-fire would never be used to describe non-existence. There are no two concepts more radically opposed. Non-existence is a total absence of reality, while fiery torture is the most vivid form of reality. How could one symbolize the other?
Consider what Jesus said about Judas in Matthew 26:24: "Woe to that man through whom the Son of man is betrayed! It would have been finer for him to have never been born." Why would it have been finer for him to have never been born? If he were never born he would be non-existent. If he died unrepentant and went to a symbolic hell he would be equally non-existent. If such were the case, Jesus' statement would be foolish. It would only make sense if Judas went to a hell of eternal punishment.
Jehovah's Witnesses teach that Jesus was resurrected as a spirit. But the Bible disagrees. Luke 24:38-39 records the following: "So He [Jesus] said to them, 'A spirit does not have flesh and bones just as you behold that I have.'" In response, Witnesses tell us that Jesus materialized bodies as the angels had done in the past when appearing to humans. Once again we appeal to John 2:18-21 where Jesus says that He will raise His then present body.
As we have seen, the Jehovah's Witnesses have a history of false claims and faulty theology. This hardly qualifies them to be "God's visible organization," let alone "His Prophet."
Copyright © 2001 StayCatholic.com
For Further Study
The Early Church Fathers on The Divinity of Christ (Free) The Early Church Fathers on Hell (Free) The Early Church Fathers on the Trinity (Free) Jehovah's Witnesses and the Early Church Fathers (Free)
Books - Answering Jehovah's Witnesses by Jason Everett and Jehovah's Witnesses : Answered Verse by Verse by David A. Reed (not a Catholic Publication but for the most part it is excellent)
DVD - Witnesses of Jehovah and Hell
Essays for Lent/Easter: Divorce and Remarriage
Essays for Lent: Marriage
Essays for Lent: Natural Family Planning
Essays for Lent: Contraception
Essays for Lent: Abstinence
Essays for Lent: The Rapture
Essays for Lent: Call No Man Father
Essays for Lent: Scapulars Medals and Relics
Essays for Lent: Statues and Holy Pictures
Essays for Lent: The Rosary
Essays for Lent: The Assumption
Essays for Lent: The Immaculate Conception
Essays for Lent: Mary Ever-Virgin
Essays for Lent: Praying to Saints
Essays for Lent: Indulgences
Essays for Lent: Purgatory
Essays for Lent: Confession
Essays for Lent: The Eucharist
Essays for Lent: The Mass
Essays for Lent: Baptism
Essays for Lent: Justification
Essays for Lent: Tradition
Essays for Lent: Scripture Alone
Essays for Lent: The Canon of Scripture
Essays for Lent: Papal Infallibility
Essays for Lent: The Pope
Essays for Lent: The Church
Essays for Lent: The Bible
Essays for Lent: The Trinity
Essays for Lent: Creationism or Evolution?
My thoughts are that JW’s many end-of-world predictions alone disqualify them for serious consideration of being true.
And, I believe, their history reflects this: their number of adherents has fallen off with each prediction becoming false.
But... we do need to be aware of this group and their teaching in order to properly refute and evangelize.
thanks for the post.
My biggest confrontation with them was when one of the children tried to save one of my kids and give them a JW book. I wrote in the book — showed it to the teacher at that time and returned the book, defaced.
They weren’t too happy with me.
I read Three Books On Padre Pio. He did not like Jehovah Witnesses. I do not mean hate but disliked.
After World War Two the Jehovah Witnesses came to Italy. He did not mind meeting Protestants. He meet his first protestants during the war and after from American soldiers who would visit. He was asked why he did not convert the Protestants. He declared "If God wants them Catholic he will do it."
I really believe he would do this because he could see into the spiritual realm. Traditional Protestants believe in 1John 4. So he could see the Holy Spirit in a person. Jehovah Witnesses do not believe Christ came in the flesh as Divinity like it declares in the bible. This is very important as St. John declares in his epistle.
Padre Pio "flipped his wig" when he heard the were going door to door in his home town. He appeared in his home town.
Thanks for this little bit of Padre Pio history. I know you are a big fan of his. Me too.
Did you notice this in the article.
He is talking about the Holy Spirit. Now I know the concept of the human mind can have us declare "it." I have made this mistake and asked forgiveness. The Holy Spirit is a He. But the author is writing about a person of the triune God in the same sentence.
"If the Holy Spirit is an impersonal force, how is it that it can speak and refer to itself in a personal way?"
That is strange. Did the author proofread his own work? He declares it is personal but writes "it"or "itself." Strange. Especially when it is about how the Jevohah's Witnesses do not believe as a person. He must of met a deadline. Strange.
always tell them when they come to my door, sorry DONT believe your brand.. good by and close the door. much better the my old man he told them we didnt believe in god and slamed the door in their faces.. then laugh his ass off
Wow! I did the same! God forgive me!!
This Should be The Holy Spirit or He.
"He declares it is personal but writes "it"or "itself."
"He declares The Holy Spirit is personal but writes "it" or "itself.
Forgive me LORD!
I am no better.
We know not what we do.
Well it was the big muckety muck of their club. He was furious. I must of caused a rift. I remember some what it read. it showed who started it. The first person with also the phony predictions.
Right on my front lawn I had a debate. We went through the bible. He got into stereotypes. So the last point was the Trinity.
He declared not in bible. I looked at him nonplussed got my pocket( I think) bible showed him the baptism of Christ. The Father was speaking, Son in water And Holy Spirit as a dove. So there I declared. He left befuddled. My mother prayed for him. And you know what I believe he found Christ if my mother prayed. She was a walking miracle praying worker. Dozen of know miracles and also I believe unknown thousands prayed into heaven.
I believe like that nun who prayed for the atheist who almost went to hell. Howard Storm.
Praise God for little old ladies who pray!!
Praise God for little old ladies who pray!!
that is because they are closer to god and their prayers are heard. when I was a kid the JW was very big in the Los Angeles area esp the San Fernando Valley. lots of doors getting slamed
Our Priests need to give more warnings when the Jehovah Witnesses are in the neighborhood. I can only recall one warning by a Priest during a Mass. It was years ago & I forgot exactly what the Priest said.
The Jehovah Witnesses ring the doorbell = Their objective is to >spiritually KILL you for all ETERNITY. It’s like lunatic criminals with large knives waiting to stab you in the heart.
Then the Jehovah Witnesses want to drag you out of your home = The Catholic Church, to ensure you stay DEAD for all ETERNITY.
Then the Jehovah Witnesses want you to KILL other people. They help you kill your >children, family, friends & anyone else you may meet. The DEATH >can be for all ETERNITY.
If the Jehovah Witnesses can’t KILL you on the first attempt they hand you POISON in the form of pamphlets (The true works of Satan). They want the poison in your house so it can KILL someone for all ETERNITY.
If you give any encouragement to Jehovah Witnesses, they’ll keep coming back to your house hoping to KILL everyone in the home for all ETERNITY.
My advice: Don’t answer the door. Don’t take a pamphlet from a Jehovah Witness. (Don’t take a Chick tract from anyone else either)
The Jehovah Witnesses are NOT at your house to >listen to you. They want to KILL you for all ETERNITY. The Jehovah Witnesses are trained to deal death to people.
If someone wants to ‘reach out’ to the Jehovah Witnesses, they should get special training. Jesus Christ: “and began to send them out two by two and gave them authority over unclean spirits.” Jesus made sure his disciples went in >twos for spiritual strength.
Adam&Eve were in Garden of Eden with God. Adam&Eve were created without >concupiscence. YET, Satan was able to deceive Adam&Eve. (Satan worked his lies on Eve when she was by herself.)
Be careful around the works of Satan.
Pope John Paul II called the family: “God’s smallest church.”
My opinion: I do NOT think anyone should open the door to Satan & give access to Jehovah Witnesses in their attempt to KILL everyone in your family for all ETERNITY.
If God puts a burden on your heart, to witness to Jehovah Witnesses, then: Only witness to Jehovah Witnesses when there are >two of you & you are both wearing your armor. +You initiate the contact or else plan the contact when they are in the neighborhood. Be careful!
cyc — your thoughts?
When they come around invite them in. If you feel like letting them get some of their spiel going then let them and look for an opening.
Years ago I got a copy of some of the Mormon books and some of the JW tracts that had some of the doctrines that changed. I keep them by the door.
When I see an opening I ask them "Hey what about....." and show them their own book or tract.
I am not mean or confrontational.
I do this for three reasons:
1) I just might open their eyes, you never know what will touch their heart.
2) It takes their time and money and keeps them occupied so that they won't have a shot at converting a neighbor that is not as strong or as knowledgeable in their faith.
3) It is fun to do after a while.
Also as True Christians are we really called on to slam doors in their faces and be mean to others?
He writes (in part):
“In Genesis 1:26 God says, “Let us make man in our image.” In the next verse we read that “God proceeded to make man in His image.” So God alone created man, and yet more than one person was involved. This is the doctrine of the Trinity”
“Elohim” is the Hebrew word translated as “God” in Genesis 1:26.
However even as the Catholic Encyclopedia explains under the heading “Elohim”:
“Elohim is the common name for God. It is a plural form, but “The usage of the language gives no support to the supposition that we have in the plural form Elohim, applied to the God of Israel, the remains of an early polytheism, or at least a combination with the higher spiritual beings” (Kautzsch). Grammarians call it a plural of majesty or rank, or of abstraction, or of magnitude (Gesenius, Grammatik, 27th ed., nn. 124 g, 132 h).”
Note that the plurality of Elohim is of “majesty or rank” and has nothing to do with another person being present according to the Catholic Encyclopedia and other reference works.
My thoughts? I call these Ego-blogs since that seems to be the only purpose they serve..boosting the ego of the blogger.
DR WALTER MARTIN
“KINGDOM OF THE CULTS”
is excellent on the JW organization.
He notes after many years of research that the founding leaders brazenly created the organization with 2 main goals:
1. to make a lot of money.
2. to !CONTROL! the lives of others tyrannically.
Walter shredded their theology and their history up one side and down the other.
He believed that all the upper ranks of the leaders knew why the organization was established though the lower ranks did not.
I have had JW’s approach our door, and once engaged a pair of them in discussion, after which none have returned to our door. But I did so in a civil manner. I try to remind myself that true charity in part revolves around sharing truth with one who has been hornswoggled, rather than allowing them to continue to be misled. Not in any sort of abusive way, of course. Perhaps one of the better ways to begin is to point out the various ways in which the JW “truths” have changed over the years, and ask the person at your door why that might have changed, and what they think about what used to be said, versus what is currently said.
The Institute of Catholic Culture had a great lecture series on this. Here’s a link to an mp3 of the lecture which focused on the JW’s: http://instituteofcatholicculture.org/media/Kingdom_of_Cults_Carnazzos_1_Jehovahs_Witnesses.mp3