Sunday, September 30, 2012

"Take care of yourself." Jehovah's Witnesses say this is wrong?

Did you know that JWs would lecture me for telling someone "Take care of yourself?" They would say that taking care of yourself is selfish, and if you get right down to it, evil. This scripture, however, seems to say otherwise. 
 "But you, dear friends, as you build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, expecting the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ for eternal life." Jude 1:20

Friday, September 28, 2012

"You are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed." "Simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ." -- Luke 11:41-42; 2 Corinthians 11:3

James Beadle:
"The arrogance lies in deciding what we wish to accept from Gods words. The creation story makes no sense to our logic, so clearly it must be wrong, or just an expansive allegory. This bread doesn't look like flesh, so my reason tells me Jesus must have meant something else than what he actually said. Election and free will cannot coexist, human reason rejects it, so we must choose one over the other, ignoring the scriptures that do not support the position we choose (as opposed to living in the tension and admitting that some things are a mystery to us and God never lies in His word). No, the arrogance is all ours when it comes to making up our own stories instead of accepting the words God has given us in the scriptures."
Spencer’s history of Kentucky Baptists in the 19th century, p. 276-278:
David Thurman was born in Woodford county, Kentucky, August 12, 1792. At the age of ten years, he was left an orphan and went to live with an elder brother, who put him to keeping bar in a tavern. He was a youth of great energy, and was fond of books. He pursued his studies with the same enthusiasm that characterized him when horse racing and playing cards.

But his wild career was suddenly cut short, in his nineteenth year, by the preventing grace of God. He was overwhelmingly convicted of sin, and after a brief but agonizing struggle he found great peace and joy, in trusting in Jesus. He was baptized by David Elkin into the fellowship of Good Hope church. Soon after his baptism, he began to exhort his former companions in sin to repent and believe the gospel.
Meanwhile, he studied theology under Nathan Hall, a distinguished Presbyterian preacher. In 1814 he was ordained to the ministry and was soon called to the care of Stewards Creek and Hardins Creek churches in Washington county. In the spring of 1818, he moved to what is now LaRue county, and gave his membership to Nolin church, of which Alexander McDugal was pastor.
Of this church Mr. Thurman at once became the working pastor, and, on the death of the aged incumbent, was formally called to that position. He also accepted the care of Mill Creek in Nelson county and Rhodes Creek, in Hardin county. His removal to the territory of Salem Association marked a new era in the history of that ancient fraternity.
In 1828, after a season of coldness in the churches, which had continued many months, Thurman became greatly afflicted because of the spiritual chill that pervaded the churches of Salem Association. He did not, however, diminish his labors, but increased them. Laboring from house to house, night and day, God’s presence began to be manifest among the people on Barren Run.
The revival spread rapidly, and soon a large number were baptized at Nolin church. During this revival, Mr. Thurman was assisted by William M. Brown, then an active young preacher.
At Nolin church one Saturday, Mr. Thurman appeared very despondent. There had been a long dearth, and the pastor’s heart was discouraged. He told the church that his labors had not been blessed; it probably was not the will of the Lord that he should labor among them, and advised them to procure another pastor. He sat down, and a profound and painful silence ensued.
Among the members present was the aged widow of John LaRue, after whom LaRue county was named. She was one of those noble Priscillas with whom God occasionally blesses his churches. She had sat humbly listening to every word the pastor said, until he sat down.
After a few moments of profound silence, she straightened herself up, and pointing one finger directly at the minister, said, in a strong emphatic tone:
“Brother Thurman, I’ll tell you what the matter is — Stop preaching John Calvin and James Arminius, and preach Jesus Christ.”

After a few moments, Mr. Thurman arose, with the tears streaming down his cheeks, and repeated the text: “For I determined not to know anything among you save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.”

Thursday, September 27, 2012

What I have now: IMAGES OF HOPE

I wanted to follow up those horrible images with the images I have now that I have the True God.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

When I was not a Christian, why didn't God answer my prayers?

I was praying to the wrong God. I was worshiping in the wrong way. If He answered my prayers then what kind of lesson would that have taught?

But when I agreed to let Jesus lead me, He did. He led me to the true Gospel and the truth of who He was by teaching me with the Roman Road to Salvation, the book of  1 John, and John chapters 4, 7, and 14.

And even before then, I can see how God the Father was slowly leading me to Jesus. John 6:44



Monday, September 24, 2012

"I and the Father are one"

I get it! "All that belongs to the Father is mine; this is why I said, 'The Spirit will tell you whatever he receives from me.'" John 16:15

The Father and the Son have the same one Spirit!!! Romans 8:9; Ephesians 4:4

Wow, I just love it when a connection clicks! ♥

The Jehovah's Witnesses-- A Cult?

Watchtower 1894 July 15 p.227 "… Our readers are writing to know if there may not be a mistake in the 1914 date. They say that they do not see how present conditions can hold out so long under the strain."

Watchtower 1941 September 15 p.288 "Receiving the gift, the marching children clasped it to them, not a toy or plaything for idle pleasure, but the Lord's provided instrument for most effective work in the remaining months before Armageddon."

Watchtower 1938 November 1 p.324 "...mark the words of Jesus, which definitely seem to discourage the bearing of children immediately before or during Armageddon"

Face the Facts (1938) pp.46-50 "Would it be Scripturally proper for them to now marry and to begin to rear children? No, is the answer, which is supported by the Scripture…. Those Jonadabs who now contemplate marriage, it would seem, would do better if they wait a few years, until the fiery storm of Armageddon is gone..."

Awake! 1969 May 22 p.15 "If you are a young person, you also need to face the fact that you will never grow old in this present system of things."

Awake! 1974 November 8 p.11 "The evidence is that Jesus' prophecy will shortly have a major fulfillment, upon this entire system of things. This has been a major factor in influencing many couples to decide not to have children at this time."

Kingdom Ministry May 1974 p.3 How Are You Using Your Life? "Reports are heard of brothers selling their homes and property and planning to finish out the rest of their days in this old system in the pioneer service. Certainly this is a fine way to spend the short time remaining before the wicked world's end."

Awake! 1989 May 8 p.13 What Career Should I Choose? "A university degree may or may not improve your employment prospects. But one fact is indisputable: "The time left is reduced"! (1 Corinthians 7:29) For all its presumed benefits, would four years or more in a university be the best use of that remaining time?-Ephesians 5:16."

"Shortly, within our twentieth century, the "battle in the day of Jehovah" will begin against the modern antitype of Jerusalem, Christendom." The Nations Shall Know That I Am Jehovah p. 216

"Some of that "generation" could survive until the end of the century. But there are many indications that "the end" is much closer than that!" Watchtower 1984 March 1 pp.18-19

Matthew 24:45 “Who really is the faithful and discreet slave ... 48 “But if ever that evil slave should say in his heart, ‘My master is delaying,’49 and should start to beat his fellow slaves ... 50 the master of that slave will come on a day that he does not expect and in an hour that he does not know, 51 and will punish him with the greatest severity and will assign him his part with the hypocrites. There is where weeping and the gnashing of teeth will be.

Who Created All Things?

Thus saith Jehovah, thy Redeemer, and he that formed thee from the womb: I am Jehovah, that maketh all things; that stretcheth forth the heavens alone; that spreadeth abroad the earth (who is with me?);-- Isaiah 44:24 

All things came into being through Him (the Word), and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.-- John 1:3 

But to the Son He says:...10 “You, Lord, in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the work of Your hands.-- Hebrews 1:8

who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; for in him were all things created, in the heavens and upon the earth, things visible and things invisible, wh...

ether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers; all things have been created through him, and unto him; --Colossians 1:15-16

“who has come to know Jehovah’s mind, or who has become his counselor?” ...For of him, and through him, and unto him, are all things. To him be the glory for ever. Amen.-- Romans 11:33-36
Please use an interlinear to look these up in Greek.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

"Do not forsake the gathering of yourselves together as some have the custom..."

Why is everyone insisting that I am a member of a church and encourage and be encouraged by the people there? People I do not yet know and trust! I am overwhelmed by adding new people to my life already... over the past year I have "met" friends and family that I had not seen in over 20 years.

"The church is not a building. It is simply the sum total of all of those in Christ, His believers. It is not an institution, but you should be surrounded by other believers that build you up in the faith."

And people say that and *still* insist that I am not following John 13:34-35 and Hebrews 10:24-25 because I am not attending church. Seems a bit of cognitive dissonance is going on outside of the JW cult.

We can and should fellowship and encourage outside of church. How many people that attend church actually do that? Or do they just attend and listen to a sermon and then leave? We support the body and love our brothers and sisters when we nurture true friendships within the body of Christ. I have my Lord Jesus Christ and His word to strengthen me and I have my close circle of Christian friends and family to encourage and be encouraged in turn. We can partake of the Lord's supper outside of church since every Born Again Christian is a priest.

Going to church stirs up old feelings of being judged and loved based on my attendance. I also feel that I need to fight against group thinking, accepting certain beliefs and doctrines based on the majority, rather than basing my beliefs on God's word and the Spirit's leadings.

Hebrews 10:24-25 "And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, 25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another" Yes, we can certainly gather together, exhort, consider on another and stir up love and good works without a church. "For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst." Matthew 18:20

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Do Jehovah's Witnesses believe Jesus was resurrected?

Resurrected means: a standing back up. 

Let's see what the Watchtower has to say about Jesus' resurrection:


 "According to the inspired Scriptures, Jesus Christ was not raised to life in the flesh " (Watchtower 8/1/1975 p. 478)


Compare to Scripture: 

'Destroy this temple and in three days, I will raise it up." The Jewish leaders said, "It took 46 years to build this temple and you're going to raise it again in three days?" But He was speaking of the temple of His BODY. (John 2:18-21)  

Chapter 17 of "You can Live Forever in Paradise on Earth" talks extensively of Jesus resurrection, saying:  "Having given up his flesh for the life of the world, Christ could never take it again and become a man once more. However, many persons believe that Christ took his fleshly body to heaven."
Most of this chapter is then dedicated to explaining the belief that Jesus was not resurrected in his fleshly body. This is addressed for at least 6 paragraphs, with the statement that "Only spirit persons with spiritual bodies can live in heaven."

The reasoning in this Watchtower book denies what the Bible says on the matter:

"They point to the fact that when Christ was raised from the dead, his fleshly body was no longer in the tomb. (Mark 16:5-7) Also, after his death Jesus appeared to his disciples in a fleshly body to show them that he was alive. Once He even had the apostle Thomas put his hand into the hole in His side so that Thomas would believe that He had actually been resurrected. (John 20:24-27) Does this not prove that Christ was raised alive in the same body in which he was put to death? No, it does not."

"But you may ask, Did not the apostle Thomas see and feel the wounds in Jesus’ side and hands, indicating that Jesus rose in the same body in which he died? How can this fact be explained?—John 20:26-28.

The Bible shows that invisible spirit creatures at times have assumed human bodies. This, many angels did in times past and this is what Jesus did upon his resurrection." (Watchtower 8/15/1969 p.484)

The first account of the resurrection that I thought of was Luke 24: 34-40 (which is missing from the citations in the above quotes) Let's see what it says in the New World Translation:  
“For a fact the Lord was raised up and he appeared to Simon!” ...
While they were speaking of these things he himself stood in their midst  ...But they were imagining they beheld a spirit. So he said to them: “Why are ​YOU​ troubled, and why is it doubts come up in ​YOUR​ hearts? See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself; feel me and see, because a spirit does not have flesh and bones just as ​YOU​ behold that I have. [[And as he said this he showed them his hands and his feet.]]

How do the Jehovah's Witnesses explain this? Was he being deceptive when he showed Thomas the holes in his hands and feet, holes that were in the body that died? Was Jesus lying when he convinced the disciples that he was not a spirit?

God evidently did away with Jesus’ body so that it could not be worshiped. (Compare Deuteronomy 34:6; Jude 9.) ... Yet once, in order to convince “doubting” Thomas, Jesus materialized a fleshly body that had wounds on it such as were on Christ’s body when he died. A careful reading of this account, though, confirms that it was an instance of a spirit creature’s materializing a body. (Awake! 9/22/1976 p.27)

We have seen that the Jehovah's Witnesses believe that Jesus was resurrected only as a spirit, his body gone forever. This is not what the Bible teaches. Why does the Watchtower go to such lengths to prove that Jesus' physical body was not resurrected?

But some may ask: ‘Did not the two angels present tell the apostles that Christ "will come thus in the same manner as you have beheld him going into the sky"?’ (Acts 1:11) Yes, they did. ... Thus his return also would be invisible, in a spiritual body. (Still in Chapter 17 of the Live Forever book.)"So then, those who refuse to recognize the signs of Jesus’ invisible presence because of looking for his coming in a body of flesh are mistaken." (Watchtower 9/1/1953 p. 520, The Fleshly Body of Jesus)

The title of chapter 17 in the Live Forever book also gives us a clue:
The title? Christ's Return-- How seen? The chapter concludes with this:
"As we have seen in the previous chapter, Bible evidence shows that in the year 1914 C.E. God’s time arrived for Christ to return and begin ruling... Since Christ’s return is invisible, is there a way to confirm that it has really occurred? Yes, there is."

So that is why the Watchtower teaches that Christ's resurrection was not bodily.

We see that it is to support the date of 1914 as Christ's return, and to claim that he returned invisibly. 
This blog has already addressed why this teaching so important to the Jehovah's Witness organization, and what the Bible has to say on the matter. 

But what of the bodily resurrection of Christ? This is the most important doctrines to a Christian. Let's take a look at why.

Who was Paul praying to at 2 Corinthians 12:8-9?

Who was Paul praying to at 2 Corinthians 12:8-9? 

In this behalf I three times entreated the Lord that it might depart from me; and yet he really said to me: “My undeserved kindness is sufficient for you; for [my] power is being made perfect in weakness.” 

Paul answers this question: Who was the Lord he was praying to?

"Most gladly, therefore, will I rather boast as respects my weaknesses, that the power of the Christ may like a tent remain over me."

Rather than correcting Paul, Jesus answered his prayer.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

We try to follow Jesus' example, right?

We are truly becoming more like Jesus, not because of our work, but because of God's work in us.

"And the Lord--who is the Spirit--makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image."--2 Corinthians 3:18

"For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him."--Philippians 2:13

(New Living Translation)

Monday, September 10, 2012

What does the Bible say about the Jehovah's Witness teachings regarding 1914 and 1918?

"So it was in 1914 that Jesus returned invisibly, without public fanfare and with only his faithful servants being aware of his return." –Watchtower 1991 5/15 p.9
Look! He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, and those who pierced him; and all the tribes of the earth will beat themselves in grief because of him.- Revelation 1:7
 “Jesus Christ, came to inspect the spiritual temple in the spring of 1918.” -Watchtower 1993 5/1 p.15       
At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Messiah!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. For false messiahs and false prophets will perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. See, I have told you ahead of time. So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the wilderness,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it. For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.- Matt. 24:23-27  

Friday, September 7, 2012

Christ's invisible return in 1914... Why is this an important teaching to Jehovah's Witnesses?

"Jehovah’s Witnesses have long recognized that this prophecy found its fulfillment with spirit-anointed Christians after the end of "the appointed times of the nations" ,the Gentile Times, in 1914." (Revelation—Its Grand Climax At Hand! page 164, 1988, "Then Is Finished the Mystery of God," pages 261-4, 1969.)

"The prophecies of 3 1/2 times mentioned at Daniel 7:25, 12:7 and Revelation 11:3 were recognized as parellel prophecies. The Watchtower focused on prophecies in Daniel, a book that twice mentions a period comparable to that mentioned later in Revelation—3 1/2 years, or 42 months (Revelation 11:2) The Watchtower of November 1, 1993, did offer a minor adjustment as to the dating of the modern fulfillment of Revelation 11:3... from December 1914 to June 1918."

"As to the ending, the magazine showed how the harassment of God’s anointed ones (Daniel 7:25) climaxed in June 1918 when J. F. Rutherford and other directors of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society were "sentenced on false charges to a long term in prison." That event certainly was "a finishing of the dashing of the power of the holy people," as noted at Daniel 12:7." (Watchtower 8/1/1994 p. 31)

"On arriving to inspect his slaves in 1918, therefore, whom did the Master, Jesus Christ, find giving to his body of attendants their measure of food supplies at the proper time? Well, by then, who had given sincere truth-seekers the correct understanding of the ransom sacrifice, the divine name, the invisibility of Christ’s presence, and the significance of 1914? ...
In 1918, when Jesus Christ inspected those claiming to be his slaves, he found an international group of Christians publishing Bible truths for use both inside the congregation and outside in the preaching work...The faithful slave and its Governing Body were in place, ready for a widened assignment. How glad we should be that this was so, for loyal Christians are richly benefiting from the devoted work of the faithful slave and its Governing Body!"
(Watchtower 3/15/1990 p. 14)

"For example, the Governing Body represents 'the faithful and discreet slave' and has special responsibility to oversee the teaching of the worldwide congregation. (Matthew 24:45)"-(Watchtower September 15th 1995 p.30)
"We need to obey the faithful and discreet slave to have Jehovah’s approval." (Watchtower Jul 15,2011 p.24 Simplified English Edition)

Without this invisible return and invisible inspection, they have no basis for claiming to speak for God.

Up next: What does the Bible have to say about these statements?

"So it was in 1914 that Jesus returned invisibly, without public fanfare and with only his faithful servants being aware of his return." –Watchtower 1991 5/15 p.9

“Jesus Christ, came to inspect the spiritual temple in the spring of 1918.” -Watchtower 1993 5/1 p.15

See the page devoted to the 1914 teaching in their current Bible study book:      

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

How to discern Bible Teachers from False Preachers

Now as a free e-book ~ no names, just pure Word of God to help us grow in discernment.

A Study of Bible Teachers and False Teachers by S. Henry

(The author is not this blog's owner, I am just sharing the link.)

Monday, September 3, 2012

Christianity is not my God.

I actually feel like an outsider. So deeply attached to Jesus, but not part of cultural Christianity... seeing some of the same things in the culture and in church that I saw from the cult I was in when Jesus pulled me out, and other times having fears that I will experience the same things, unfounded or not.

I feel no need to defend "Christians" some are just part of the culture, using the name, attending church, following rules... others may be true Christians but have some fault that is considered more offensive. That's okay. I don't need to defend Christians the way I used to defend the people that belonged to the cult I was in. I don't even need to defend myself. No one said we would be perfect.

I see this getting hurled around as an insult to Christians: "I like your Christ. I do not like your Christians. They are so unlike your Christ." Gandhi

It doesn't bother me. In fact, I would much rather you love and cling to Jesus ALONE. Reject me, reject church... Go to Him. Go to Jesus alone.

Christianity is not my God.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Are you proud of being a Christian?

I have been reading Romans 1-3 over and over and trying to come to an understanding... I asked my brothers and sisters for help and then I did not head it, not opening the links to the sermons provided... but now I understand. It is a scathing rebuke to those very same Christians that belong to God. (Romans 1:7) If you read from Romans 1-3 in context you see the letter doesn't change audiences. Who was Paul writing to? What was he rebuking them for? Pride.

It is a rebuke for being judgmental, for being proud. Read it and see the meaning in context. Look at 2:1-5 and 2:17-20 and replace Jew with Christian or your denomination. How do you judge when you are no better? There is no one righteous, not even one. (3:10)

"The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like." (Galatians 5) I tell you I read this and I know what this is telling me. My sins are in that list.

"I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God." (vs. 21) I am in big trouble! Aren't I?

Thank God...

They were even more astonished and said to Him, “Then who can be saved?” Looking at them, Jesus said, “With people it is impossible, but not with God; for all things are possible with God.” (Mark 10:26-27)

And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God. (1 Corinthians 6:11)