There have been a number of encouraging comments in the wake of our announcement that we’ll soon be moving to a new self-hosted site for Beroean Pickets. Once launched, and with your support, we hope to have a Spanish version as well, followed by a Portuguese one. We also hope, again with community support, to have multilingual “Good News” sites which will focus on the message of the Good News of Salvation, the Kingdom, and the Christ, without any connection to existing religious denominations, JWs or otherwise.
Quite understandably, a change of this nature can create some genuine apprehension. Some have voiced concern that we do not become yet another religion under yet another form of human rule—another ecclesiastical hierarchy. Typical of this thought is a comment made by StoneDragon2K.
Avoiding Historical Repetition
It has been said that those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it. We who back this forum are of a single mind. We find the idea of following in the pattern of the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses—or that of any similar ecclesiastical body—thoroughly abhorrent. Having seen where this leads, we want no part of it. Disobedience to Christ results in death. The words which will continue to guide us as we progress in understanding of God’s Word are these:
“But YOU, do not YOU be called Rabbi, for one is YOUR teacher, whereas all YOU are brothers. 9 Moreover, do not call anyone YOUR father on earth, for one is YOUR Father, the heavenly One. 10 Neither be called ‘leaders,’ for YOUR Leader is one, the Christ. 11 But the greatest one among YOU must be YOUR minister. 12 Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.” (Mt 23:8-12)
Yes indeed! We are all brothers! Only one is our leader; only one, our teacher. This does not mean a Christian cannot teach, for how else can he explain the good news of the Christ? But in imitation of Jesus, he will strive to never teach of his own originality. (More on this in Part 2.)
The above reminder was just one of many our Lord imparted to his disciples, though this one in particular required a lot of repetition. It seemed they were constantly arguing over who would be first, even at the Last Supper. (Luke 22:24) Their concern was for their own place.
While we may promise to stay free of this attitude, these are just words. Promises can, and often are, broken. Is there any way we can guarantee this won’t happen? Is there any means by which we can all protect ourselves from “wolves in sheep’s clothing”? (Mt 7:15)
Indeed there is!
The Leaven of the Pharisees
Seeing his disciples’ desire for prominence, Jesus gave them this warning:
“Jesus said to them: “Keep your eyes open and watch out for the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”” (Mt 16:6)
Whenever the publications I’ve studied all my life touched on this Scripture, it was always to focus on the meaning of leaven. Leaven is a bacteria which is applied to many things, such as bread dough. It only takes a little bit to spread into the entire mass. The bacteria multiply and feed, and as a by-product of their activity, produce gas which causes the mass of dough to rise. Baking kills the bacteria and we’re left with the type of bread we enjoy so much. (I love a good French Baguette.)
The ability of leaven to permeate a substance in a quiet, unseen manner serves as an apt metaphor for both positive and negative spiritual processes. It was in a negative sense that Jesus used it to refer to the quietly corrupting influence of the Sadducees and Pharisees. Verse 12 of Matthew 16 shows that the leaven was “the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” However, there were many false teachings in the world at that time. Teachings from Pagan sources, teachings of educated philosophers, even teachings of libertines. (1Co 15:32) What made the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees particularly relevant and dangerous was its source. It came from the religious leaders of the nation, men considered holy and who were esteemed.
Once those men were removed from the scene, as happened when the Jewish nation was destroyed, do you think their leaven ceased to exist?
Leaven is self-propagating. It can lie dormant until put in contact with a food source and then it begins to grow and spread. Jesus was about to depart and leave the welfare of the congregation in the hands of his apostles and disciples. They would do works even greater than Jesus did, which could lead to feelings of pride and self-worth. (John 14:12) What corrupted the religious leaders of the Jewish nation could also corrupt those taking the lead in the Christian congregation if they failed to obey Jesus and humble themselves. (James 4:10; 1 Peter 5:5,6)
How could the sheep protect themselves?
John Gives Us a Way to Protect Ourselves
It is worthy of note that John’s second letter contains some of the last words ever written under divine inspiration. As the last living apostle, he knew he would soon be leaving the congregation in the hands of others. How to protect it once he’d departed?
He wrote the following:
“Everyone who pushes ahead and does not remain in the teaching of the Christ does not have God. The one who does remain in this teaching is the one who has both the Father and the Son. 10 If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your homes or say a greeting to him. 11 For the one who says a greeting to him is a sharer in his wicked works.” (2Jo 9-11)
We must view this in the context of the times and culture in which it was written. John is not suggesting that a Christian is not allowed to even say a “Hello!” or “Good Morning” to someone who does not bring the teaching of the Christ with him. Jesus dialogued with Satan, certainly the foremost apostate. (Mt 4:1-10) But Jesus did not fellowship with Satan. A greeting in those days was more than a simple “Hello” in passing. By warning Christians not to receive such a man into their homes, he is speaking of befriending and socializing with someone who brings a contrary teaching.
The question then becomes, What teaching? This is critical, because John isn’t telling us to break off friendship with everyone who simply doesn’t agree with us. The teaching he refers to is “the teaching of the Christ.”
Again, the context will help us understand his meaning. He wrote:
“The older man to the chosen lady and to her children, whom I truly love, and not only I but also all those who have come to know the truth, 2 because of the truth that remains in us and will be with us forever. 3 There will be with us undeserved kindness, mercy, and peace from God the Father and from Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, with truth and love.”
“4 I rejoice very much because I have found some of your children walking in the truth, just as we received commandment from the Father. 5 So now I request you, lady, that we love one another. (I am writing you, not a new commandment, but one that we had from the beginning.) 6 And this is what love means, that we go on walking according to his commandments. This is the commandment, just as you have heard from the beginning, that you should go on walking in it.” (2 John 1-6)
John speaks of love and truth. These are intertwined. He also refers to these as the things “heard from the beginning”. There is nothing new here.
Now Jesus didn’t load us down with a lot of new commandments to replace the old ones of the Mosaic Law. He taught that the law could be summed up by two pre-existing commandments: Love your neighbor as yourself, and love Jehovah with your whole being. (Mt 22:37-40) To these he added a new commandment.
“I am giving you a new commandment, that you love one another; just as I have loved you, you also love one another.” (Joh 13:34)
Therefore, we can safely conclude that when John speaks in verse 9 of those who do not remain in the teaching of Christ, he speaks of the teaching of love with truth that was imparted from God through Jesus to his disciples.
It follows as night does day that the corrupting leaven of human leaders would cause a Christian to depart from the divine teaching of love and truth. Since man always dominates man to his injury, a religion in which men rule others cannot be loving. If we are not filled with God’s love, then the truth also cannot be in us, for God is love and only through love can we come to know God, the source of all truth. (1 John 4:8; Ro 3:4)
How can we love God if we misrepresent him with false teachings? Will God love us in that case? Will he give us his spirit if we teach lies? The spirit of God produces truth in us. (John 4:24) Without that spirit, a different spirit from a wicked source enters in and produces fruits of falsehood. (Mt 12:43-45)
When Christians are corrupted by the leaven of the Pharisees—the leaven of human leadership—they do not remain in the teaching of the Christ which is love and truth. Unimaginable horror can result. If you think I speak in hyperbole, just remember that the 30-years war, the 100-years war, the World Wars, the Holocaust, the near-elimination of the South, Central, and North American indigenous populations – were all horrors perpetrated by God-fearing Christians dutifully obeying their leaders.
Now a Jehovah’s Witness will surely object to being lumped in with blood-stained Christendom. It is both true and laudable that Witnesses have a solid record of remaining neutral as respects the wars and conflicts of the nations. And if that were all that was required to be free of the leaven of the Pharisees, there would be cause for boasting. However, the effects of this contamination can manifest in ways far worse than that of wholesale slaughter. As surprising as that may seem, consider that those who are cast into the deep, wide sea with a millstone around their neck are not those who kill by the sword, but those who stumble the little ones. (Mt 18:6) If we take a man’s life, Jehovah can resurrect him, but if we steal his soul, what hope is left? (Mt 23:15)
They Did Not Remain in the Teaching of the Christ
In speaking of “the teaching of the Christ”, John spoke about the commandments they had received from the beginning. He added nothing new. In fact, the new revelations from Christ transmitted through John were by then already part of the inspired record. (Scholars believe the book of Revelation preceded the writing of John’s letter by two years.)
Centuries later, men pushed ahead and did not remain in the original teaching by promoting ideas that sprang from the leaven of the Pharisees—that is, the false teachings of a religious hierarchy. Ideas like the Trinity, Hellfire, the immortality of the human soul, predestination, Christ’s invisible presence in 1874, then 1914, and the denial of spirit adoption as sons of God are all new ideas originating from men acting as leaders in place of Christ. None of these teachings can be found in “the teaching of the Christ” which John referred to. They all sprang up afterwards from men speaking of their own originality for their own glory.
“If anyone desires to do His will, he will know concerning the teaching whether it is from God or I speak of my own originality. 18 He that speaks of his own originality is seeking his own glory; but he that seeks the glory of him that sent him, this one is true, and there is no unrighteousness in him.” (Joh 7:17, 18)
Those who gave birth to and nurtured these false doctrines through time have a verifiable historical record of unrighteous acts. Therefore, their teachings are revealed as glory-seeking falsehoods. (Mt 7:16) They have not remained in the teaching of the Christ, but have pushed ahead.
Protecting Ourselves from the Leaven of Human Leadership
If I may borrow from a famous recurring line in a well-known Spaghetti Western, “There are two kinds of people in the world, those that obey God and those that obey men.” From the days of Adam, human history is defined by these two choices.
As we are on the cusp of expanding our ministry with new multilingual sites, the question arises: “How do we keep from becoming just another Christian denomination run by men?” Whatever his virtues and his flaws, C.T. Russell had no intention of allowing one man to take over the Watchtower Society. He made provision in his will for an executive committee of 7 to run things, and J. F. Rutherford was not named to that committee. Yet only months after his death and despite the legal provisions of his will, Rutherford took the helm and eventually dissolved the 7-man executive committee and after that, the 5-man editorial committee, appointing himself as “generalissimo”.
So the question should not be what guarantees that we won’t, like so many others, follow the same downward spiral to human rulership. The question should be: What are you prepared to do should we, or others that follow, take that course? Jesus’ warning of the leaven and John’s direction on how to deal with those corrupted by it were both given to individual Christians, not some church leadership committee or governing body. The individual Christian must act for him or herself.
Maintaining a Spirit of Christian Freedom
Many of us on these sites come from a stringent background of religious dogma which did not allow us to openly question instructions and teachings from our leaders. For us, these sites are an oasis of Christian freedom; places to come and associate with others of like mind; to learn about our Father and our Lord; to deepen our love for both God and men. We don’t want to lose what we have. The question is, how to keep that from happening? The answer is not simple. There are many facets to it. Freedom is a beautiful, yet fragile, thing. It needs to be handled delicately and handled with wisdom. A heavy handed approach, even one intended to protect the freedom we cherish, could end up destroying it.
We will discuss ways in which we can guard and grow what we have planted here in our next post. I look forward, as always, to your comments and reflections.
A Brief Word on the Progress of the New Site
I had hoped to have the site ready by now, but as the saying goes, “the best laid plans of mice and men…” (Or just mice, if you’re a fan of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.) The learning curve for the WordPress theme I’ve chosen to enhance the site’s capabilities is a little bigger than I thought. But the key problem is simply a lack of time. Nevertheless, it is still my top priority, so I’ll continue to keep you informed.
Again, thanks for your support and encouragement.
[…] the first part of the series, we saw that to protect ourselves from the folly of organized religion, we must […]
In hindsight, I think JF Rutherford made the correct call as for the individual guidance that Nathan Knorr and Fred Franz continued, until the GB “fixed the wheel” in 1976. Imo, when Rutherford put down board coup, he also put down the first “GB” attempt at a dictatorship that we have today. And THAT is why Jehovah’s witnesses prospered spiritually, at one time. But no more. Had Rutherford not put it down, the ministry would have been GB lost from the getgo. Think about it. Rutherford killed the first GB coup attempt, that finally was successful by 1976, and JWs… Read more »
I’m going to have to disagree with you about Rutherford. It was he who launched the coup and become the autocrat or generalissimo (his term) of the Society. There is little about that period of JW history to praise in my opinion. For more details, check out this article.
What we are seeing now is a return to the autocratic rule of Rutherford, though even with the latest excesses, I don’t think we’ve matched his era yet.
Nostalgia must be a human condition. While I only have 37 years of servitude (I should probably subtract a few years from that total as there was a stretch or two in which my efforts were halfhearted) and didn’t witness the Rutherford period first hand, I personally don’t see the organization being less controlling 20-30 years ago as compared to now. 30 years ago I recall having to wear a white shirt, with a full suit (not blazer and slacks), with the suit buttoned or risk being pulled from the part or counseled after the fact. I think there was… Read more »
Those are valid points. For me, the difference now is a tightening down of a doctrinal nature. We would discuss our differences with views expressed in the Watchtower back in the 70s and 80s, without fear of being disfellowshipped. Now it seems the slightest dissent is dealt with harshly. Perhaps this is the effect of the internet. I’m wondering if a lot of this is due to how vulnerable and exposed to criticism the GB now feel. Their doctrinal insecurity is showing.
I look forward to reading in Portuguese
When your in a fix phil 4:6..if I put myself in there shoes, they probably want clarify what you have been saying…motivation behind your words, is it clarity of current or previous teaching, or something else…only you can answer that, but I might be wrong. I’m fairly new on this site, and I get that there’s some of us, how these new and some old doctrines fit scripturally, & we want to explore without being “labelled ” whatever. There’s an old expression regarding supporters of their team, that is ‘there one eyed ‘, so just be cautious as a serpant… Read more »
I received a letter from the elders Saturday. They have sent me an invitation to a “Judicial hearing”. They feel like I can “undermine the confidence of others in Jehovah’s arrangement”. It’s interesting they mentioned me believing in the governing body and 1914 as important, yet they didn’t even mention our Father or His Son. I’m thinking about writing them a letter of my own…
eyeontorah, I don’t know anything about your situation, but if it’s any help I can explain a bit of how it was for me. It was hard, but at the same time it was truly wonderful to finally realise that I could worship God in the way I wanted to, that is in the way that He wanted me to – in spirit and truth.
I wish you well, brother. Acts 14:22
Thanks Skye I really appreciate that.
Just mess them about its the same old story it’s all on their own terms your on trial your not allowed any witnesses . There’s no real justice . They are only interested that you accept the GB as gods channel of communication . It’s a witch hunt . It doesn’t matter what the bible really says . They are not interested . This for me was the final proof that showed me that it just cannot be the truth . Let them have their religion and move on to the real truth . God in my opinion is drawing… Read more »
Will the previous entries be saved for future reference? Those of us in the ex-jw community would like to know.
Yes, nothing will be lost. However, I’d like to improve the categories for purposes of searching. I’d also like to add a list of topics. I’ll be explaining this in detail shortly.
Im looking forward to the new website and appreciate your time and effort Meleti that you have gone to in producing this site and the new ones to come – this is my only source of spiritual gathering as far as the trinity doctrine goes – the word “trinity” is not in the bible so that should be a clear indicator that it doesnt exist – the concept is not clear in the bible so its a bit rough to accuse someone of not speaking the “truth” if the” truth” is not clear if we just stick to whats actually… Read more »
Thank you, Meleti, for the clarification. Apparently you chose to take that quotation from an older version of the New World Translation. I prefer the versions below since I like to think of all of us as the one family of God, regardless of gender or race. Don’t let anyone call you ‘Rabbi,’ for you have only one teacher, and all of you are equal as brothers and sisters. NLT But don’t make others call you Rabbi, because you have only one teacher, and you are all followers. God’s Word Translation You mustn’t be called ‘Rabbi.’ You have one teacher,… Read more »
The Greek word in Mt 23:8 translated in the NWT as brother is adelphos which means “brothers”. Unfortunately, we don’t have a gender-neutral word in English that does not carry the connotation of the male vs. the female. Few languages do. However, from the context, we can see that Jesus wasn’t implying that it would be okay for women to call men Rabbi, leader and Father, but not for men. The purpose of my post was to focus on the need for us to remember we are all brothers, and by that I mean spiritual siblings. There is a danger… Read more »
I believe Spanish does it the same. Their “hermanos” means a group of two or more brothers and/or sisters regardless of gender. It’s important not to get overly wrapped up in language issues, since these are influenced by imperfect human trends and forces over many centuries. No language today is perfect. We must also be mindful that many, many Bible passages use words in a general/generic sense, as opposed to the high-precision, hyper-literate, computerized world of today. Their mindset was much different than ours, and they reasoned on matters more informally. It would be a mistake to read into the… Read more »
Man was created first. Then woman out of man and every man out of woman thereafter. Thankfully, we are all children of God.
Thank you, BrendaEvans.
I would like to leave a thought with you, which is a regular feature in the answers I give in the studying – simply keep focused on Jehovah and His teachings. I know that I am sharing with you something you already do, but sometimes, it is nice to just go back to basics, study and think in faith, spirit and love.
Emilyjeff, you made some very good points regarding the inclusion of sisters, and the NWT translation of Col 1:15-17. The Trinity doctrine is always a confusing topic for me because there are arguments and supporting documentation for both sides.
Regarding the trinity and similar debates, we have to decide just what sort of Christian we want to be, assuming that’s what we want. There are many people of the mind that “God loves me, Jesus loves me, I am good to people, that’s all I need to know.” Well, maybe that’s all they WANT to know, but is it all they need? That is the question. So many times I have seen such debates end with, “well, just have faith, and one day all our questions will be answered”. For some people, that answer is good enough, but it… Read more »
We do have to try to press on to accurate knowledge of God and his son . My point is this we can’t know every detail about them even Paul said we see through a hazy outline . The man had revelations given to him and could perform miracles an evidence of holy spirit . Yet there were many things he did not know . We just have to try and work with what we do know what has been revealed to us individually . I know this that having accurate knowledge of God is about knowing his personality and… Read more »
You are right about not allowing debates to lead us into unloving attitudes. No one knows or understands the scriptures perfectly. Humility requires us to admit that we could be wrong. Still, we can’t be swayed by every new idea that comes along. We need very good reasons for changing what we believe to be true, and base a change of view on someone’s clever reasoning or force of personality. Coming to an accurate knowledge of God is a lifetime effort, one that will not be completed before we are gone. The thing that is important is to try, to… Read more »
I think it is admirable that “the six brothers who are now involved in the Beroean Pickets and Discuss the Truth forums came to the realization that we need to do more if we are to obey Jesus in publicizing the Good News of the kingdom…” However I did notice that there are no “sisters” involved in these efforts, or perhaps they are simply in a support category. Also in the present post We Are All Brothers – Part 1 again where are the sisters? Shouldn’t the title be We Are All Children of God or at least We Are… Read more »
The title is taken from Matthew 23:8, “But YOU, do not YOU be called Rabbi, for one is YOUR teacher, whereas all YOU are brothers.”
Hi emilyjeff, you said: “Shouldn’t the title be We Are All Children of God or at least We Are All Brothers and Sisters?” and then you quote Paul, to the effect that in Christ there is neither male nor female, but you take no note that both he and the rest of NT writers always address the members of congregations with the term ‘brothers,’ never ‘brothers and sisters.’ We are therefore forced to conclude that Paul with the term ‘brothers’ either only ever addresses male Christians, with the intent of ignoring the sisters, or that the term ‘brothers’ automatically includes… Read more »
J-A-T, Reviewing your posts here and on Discuss the Truth, I’ve seen that your words often provocative, lacking the tactfulness that contributes to an edifying exchange of thought. You say, “not wanting to be ‘triggering,’ or causing ‘the vapours’ here…”, then you set about to do just that; or are you truly unaware that your words and use of sarcasm are off-putting to many, myself included. It also seems presumptuous for you to tell us how God views gender issues, or anything else for that matter. For his view on things, we have his written word. If you are able… Read more »
It seems like every time I hold up a mirror, people don’t like what they see.
Bad me, I must not do that.
When you hold up a mirror, it is yourself that you see, is it not?
You can go on about these things for ever and a day we just need to believe that he’s the son of God and have faith and love one another . I don’t know how many countless arguments I’ve heard over the years in support of either doctrine . I’ve formed my own viewpoint and that’s all you can do . Just love people that’s all that was his main message love in action not division .
I agree with you brother. Belief in the trinity doctrine is not what brings, or takes away, salvation. It’s belief that the Son of God died for our sins that determines salvation. Once we put faith in our King as our ransom, we should continue walking in the Spirit of love that he walked. It’s not our own human knowledge that saves us. Faith, grace and love is what will save us.
Hopefully once the “Good News” site is set up we can broaden out and get a clearer understanding of what exactly will determine our salvation through scripture; I see from the comments here that that is something which we can benefit from and there is much more that we can learn from the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Good News of the Kingdom of God. Yes, we must have love for one another, but we must not forget that truth and love are inseparable and this is where knowledge and understanding of the gospel comes in. 2 Thes 2:10-12 “and… Read more »
I agree Skye. We are to walk in the Spirit of true love that our Messiah walked. We are to become imitators of Christ. (1 Cor. 11:1)
Love is not what we feel it is, love is what the scriptures say it is.
“For this is the love of God: that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome” 1 John 5:3
Love for God moves us to obey Him, thus imitating Christ. Love for neighbor moves us to treat them as we want to be treated.
Thanks eyeontorah. I was thinking about the scriptures you mentioned in your comment relating to the trinity. I would love to discuss these with you because I have studied some of the points you make, and believe there are some satisfactory answers from scripture. This is what I mean when I say that hopefully when the Good News site is set up we will have the opportunity to discuss these scriptures in more detail. Of course I am sure you will agree that because we do not understand something, that does not mean there is no scriptural explanation!
Tell you what I think sky e that that scripture has its fulfillment sometime in the future during the presence of the lawless one who presents lying signs and portents in order to deceive if possible even the chosen ones . It seems that at some point toward the end knowledge of God will increase as Daniel said perhaps by means of the 2 witnesses who back up their message with signs and holy spirit perhaps proving what the real truth is. But also there may be those who prefer unrighteousness instead and will let themselves be deceived by the… Read more »
Of course, you may wish to have this discussion in a private exchange, but should you prefer, DiscussTheTruth.com will allow others to participate. It is, of course, your choice.
father jack, 2 Thes 2:1-12 is of course referring to the antichrist and the day of the Lord (parousia). With regard to scriptures I quoted v 10-12, although this is still relating to the same, it also makes clear to us now the importance of believing TRUTH and not ERROR, and that salvation depends on love of truth. So even now, we must have a love of truth. Scriptures which come to mind in harmony with this: Truth is a fruit of the spirit. Matt 7:21-23 which shows that if you accept falsehoods you will be deceived. In Romans 1… Read more »
There is a web site http://www.angelfire.com/space/thegospeltruth/trinity.html more commonly referred to as ‘The Trinity Delusion” in which the author goes to very great and animated lengths to refute the Trinity. Those with an interest may find his site informative. One of the more interesting points he brings up is about the “Shema”, the OT verse that says, “The Lord (YHWH) our God is one Lord You must not have any other gods against my face”. From the standpoint of the Jews in the first century, how could Jesus convince THEM to believe in the Trinity in a way that did not… Read more »
Hi Miken, There’s an amazing book which is free online:
“The Only True God” by Eric Chang.
He was a pastor and a devoted Trinitarian for 50 years. And he was wondering how it would be possible to preach the Gospel to Muslims and Jews and through his studies he came to see that trinitarianism was incompatible with the bible. Have a read, I’m sure you’ll find it interesting.
“Ideas like the Trinity, Hellfire, the immortality of the human soul, predestination, Christ’s invisible presence in 1874, then 1914, and the denial of spirit adoption as sons of God are all new ideas originating from men acting as leaders in place of Christ. None of these teachings can be found in “the teaching of the Christ” which John referred to.” Meleti you are stating presumptions not all of which those contributing to this and the new site might agree with. For instance the Trinity doctrine. Although not explicitly taught in the NT I believe it is implicitly there and does… Read more »
You stated, “This is just one of a significant number of scriptures that have been corrupted in the NWT and RNWT to support Watchtower theology and in this particular case to undermine the deity of Christ.” The “deity of Christ” can only be “undermined” if Christ were, in fact, a deity instead of simply being the Son of God. Since the very topic at issue is the Trinity, you cannot use that as your sole objection. Otherwise, your point amounts to saying, “you can’t reject the Trinity, because undermining the deity of Christ is a rejection of the Trinity.” Such… Read more »
To call this a presumption would be to label every Bible-based belief I have a presumption. I firmly believe that the Trinity is untrue. This is not a position I take lightly. I have spent countless hours discussing the doctrines with its proponents in three countries and two languages. I know there are different definitions concerning the nature of the Trinity is. When I was preaching in South America, I frequently came up against the doctrine in the door-to-door work since 99% of the people I preached to were Catholic. They would all rhyme off the same litany to me… Read more »
I believe the Trinity doctrine is a bad way to explain something that’s unexplainable in human terms. God is not broken into three parts (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). Yet, a the the same time, God is not limited to just those three manifestations. God is One, but at the very same time, God is many. Jesus, when He came to earth, was not a reincarnated angel. He was born of God. The very Spirit of God was borne by a woman as flesh. This Spirit existed before all things. There is only one Holy Spirit. The I believe the… Read more »
Hi eyeontorah, I agree with you on this point. The nature of God is simply beyond us and all we have is what He has revealed to us. I don’t believe trinitarian are completely off base, because there are a lot of scriptures that point to this hard to comprehend relationship between Jesus and the Father. However, I do believe their doctrine explaining it is wrong. So to me, the trinity is an incorrect attempt to explain something difficult. I was an Arian as a JW completely sure of the personal pre-existence of Jesus. Then, my eyes were opened to… Read more »
Hi miken, With regard to Hebrew 1:8, the book Truth In Translation explains why both translations are possible. While I’m not a staunch defender of the NWT, where it shines is in unmasking the fraudulent translations to which Trinitarians have so often resorted for support for their theology. In this case, however, the rendering can go either way. While it’s true that God and Jesus are practically interchangeable in some passages of the NT, the Trinity doctrine goes far beyond asserting some kind of equivalence between the two. The concept of three persons in one being, with the necessary attribution… Read more »
Appreciate your well written and balance article Meleti. Yes in Jesus day, the Jews incorporated their own self interest traditions, but not necessarily according to what they had received from Jehovah. In fact, some of these traditions brought them into conflict with God’s laws. Jesus confronted them matt 15:3-9 And it’s a matter of record that, from the very beginning wicked persons made their appearance within early on the Christian cong. The couple Ananias and Sapphira played false to the holy spirit and were put to death by Jehovah, as an example to others. The apostle Paul mentions finding himself… Read more »
Cheers meleti and thanks for your work gods blessing mate its nice to see sometimes we can lighten up as well . The baguettes are nice
Wonderful article, some more spiritual meat to really forward to and I really like the focus.
Thank you for all your work, no doubt you are being blessed spiritually, the forum here has grown and is a place one can trust to come to and know there is no hostility and open discussion in Christian manners.
Meleti, may I just make a point? You say, “the Good News” sites which will focus on the message of the Good News of Salvation, the Kingdom and the Christ ….”
I was curious as to why you put the message in that order; my reason being that the Good News of Salvation, and the Christ are, of course, incorporated into the Good News of the Kingdom of God.
Hi Skye. There is no significance to the order. I wasn’t listing them in order of importance or any other criteria, though as I look at it now, I see that I inadvertently listed them in descending alphabetical order. The reason I listed all three is that Jehovah’s Witnesses think the good news is “of the kingdom”. That phrase, if memory serves me, occurs about 10 times in the NWT, while the good news about the Christ or about Jesus occurs about double that. There are also occurrences of the good news of salvation. Other modifiers are used and often… Read more »
Wonderful article, very insightful to what can and has happened to truth , May Jehovah bless this attitude that is being taught here and bear some real spiritual fruit
Wow, so refreshing Meleti!!! Thank you for the care and much thought you’ve put in to this new phase or chapter to ensure we maintain the teachings of Christ. I’m feeling excited and looking forward to this journey.
Greetings to you Meleti and everyone
Thank you Meleti. Thank you.
A little garden, young and promising
Being dug over, rotavated with love and care
Being given the best top soil, with goodness
A lovely place, beautiful and rare
Getting ready to be planted with young sprouts
That could come out in all seasons
Offering different colours to bring enjoyment
A haven of love and reason.
And thank you, brendaevans32 for beautifying the place.