Covering Chapter 5 Paragraphs 18-25 of God’s Kingdom Rules

Are we guilty of making wild and unsubstantiated claims? Consider the following:

Ever since then, Christ has guided his people to focus their efforts on gathering the prospective members of this great crowd that will emerge, alive and safe, from the great tribulation. – par. 18

The claim is that we are guided by Jesus Christ. Now the statement that “Christ has guided” Jehovah’s Witnesses to gather the great crowd of Revelation 7:9 may seem presumptuous and self-serving to an outsider, but to be fair, any other Christian denomination makes similar claims.  Catholics call the Pope the Vicar of Christ. Mormons consider their apostles to be prophets of God.  I’ve seen fundamentalist preachers who pause in the middle of a sermon to thank Jesus for a message they just received from him.  Are Jehovah’s Witnesses part of this club, or is it true that Jesus Christ is in fact guiding them to gather a great crowd of other sheep with an earthly hope out from among the nations?

How does one prove whether this is true or not? How does one apply the Bible command to not believe every inspired expression, but to test each one to see if it is from God as 1 John 4:1 says?

There can be only one standard to go by—the Bible itself.

The idea that the great crowd has been gathered since 1935 is based on the assumption that the other sheep of John 10:16 refers, not to the gentiles that joined the Christian congregation from 36 C.E. onward to form ‘one flock under one shepherd’, but rather to a secondary group of Christians with an earthly hope that only came into existence approximately 1,930 years after Jesus spoke of them.  Next we have to assume the great crowd of Revelation 7:9 are these selfsame other sheep, even though the Bible makes no connection between the two. Yet another assumption requires us to disregard the location of the great crowd. The Bible clearly puts them in heaven, in the temple and before the throne of God. (Re. 7:9, 15)  (The word for “temple” here is naos in Greek and refers to the inner sanctuary with its two compartments, the holy, where only the priests could enter, and the Holy of Holies, where only the high priest could enter.)

Is it not a pleasure to contemplate the way Christ has guided God’s people to such a clear Scriptural hope for the future? – par. 19

“A clear Scriptural hope”?!  If you’ve been regularly studying this book, God’s Kingdom Rules, since it started being considered in the Congregation Bible Study, you can attest to the fact that no Scriptures have been used to prove the JW hope for either the other sheep or the great crowd.  The Scriptures do show that the hope for both is to rule in the Kingdom of the Heavens with Christ; but as for an “earthly” hope, no scriptures have been provided.  So to claim “a clear Scriptural hope” seems to be an attempt to get everyone on board with the doctrine hoping that no one notices this is a lie.

What Loyalty to the Kingdom Requires

If there was one criticism that Jesus repeatedly leveled against the religious leaders of his day, it was the charge of hypocrisy. Saying one thing while doing another is a sure way to bring the reproach of God down upon one. With that in mind consider the following:

 As God’s people continued to learn about the Kingdom, they also needed to grasp fully what it means to be loyal to that heavenly government. – par. 20

What heavenly government is being referred to here? The Bible does not speak about loyalty to a heavenly government. It does speak about loyalty and obedience to the Christ. Christ is the king. He has not set up any form of government bureaucracy such as is common in the governments of men. He is the government. So why not just say that? Why use the term “government” when what we really mean is our King Jesus? Because that’s not what we mean. Here’s what we mean:

The spiritual food from the faithful slave has consistently exposed the corruption of big business and has warned God’s people not to give in to its rampant materialism. – par. 21

Since the “faithful slave” is now considered to be the men of the Governing Body, loyalty to the heavenly government really means obedience to the direction of the Governing Body a.k.a. the faithful slave.

This so-called faithful and discreet slave has, according to these paragraphs, warned us against the corruption of big business, rampant materialism, false religion, and involvement in the political system under Satan. Naturally, to avoid any charge of hypocrisy, the organization of Jehovah’s Witnesses with its corporate arm, the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, would have to have avoided all these aforementioned ills.

At one time, each congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses that built a Kingdom Hall owned that Kingdom Hall. The Watchtower Bible and Tract Society held no property outside of its own branch offices and headquarters. However, a few years ago a major change took place. All property mortgages or loans owed by various congregations worldwide were forgiven. However, in exchange the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society became the landlord of all these properties. With over 110,000 congregations worldwide the number of Kingdom Halls owned by the corporation now numbers many tens of thousands and is valued at many billions of dollars. It therefore counts itself among the largest landowners in the world. Since there is absolutely no scriptural reason for it to take possession of all these properties, it seems hypocritical for it criticize big business and rampant materialism.

As to the warning against false religion and the accusation that all such religion is part of “Babylon the Great”, we must first consider whether the doctrines of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society constitute false teachings. If the teachings on blood, disfellowshipping, 1914, 1919, the overlapping generations, and the other sheep are false, how can Jehovah’s Witnesses avoid being tarred by the very brush with which they are painting everyone else?

As for the claim that we avoid involvement in “the political part of Satan’s organization”, what does the so-called faithful and discreet slave have to say about their 10-year membership in what is to Jehovah’s Witnesses the most reprehensible part of Satan’s political organization, the United Nations?

The holy spirit guided Christ’s followers to just such a view in 1962, when landmark articles on Romans 13:1-7 were published in the November 15 and December 1 issues of The Watchtower. Finally, God’s people grasped the principle of relative subjection that Jesus had revealed in his famous words: “Pay back Caesar’s things to Caesar but God’s things to God.” (Luke 20:25) True Christians now understand that the superior authorities are the secular powers of this world and that Christians must be subject to them. However, such subjection is relative. When the secular authorities ask us to disobey Jehovah God, then we answer as did the apostles of old: “We must obey God as ruler rather than men.” – par. 24

Granted, this subjection to the superior authorities is relative, yet if the laws of the local government do not conflict with God’s laws, then Christians have a civic responsibility to set a higher standard for obedience and subjection.  While we focus on the issue of neutrality we all but ignore another important issue.  Are we bringing honor to God’s name by promoting peace and security in the community?

What about reporting crimes?  Is there a government on earth that doesn’t want its citizenry to cooperate with law enforcement to promote a crime-free environment?  Ironically, while our publications have much to say about neutrality, they have virtually nothing to say about civic responsibility in this regard.  In fact, a search in the WT Library over the past 65 years on “reporting crimes” brings up only one reference that is pertinent to this topic.

w97 8/15 p. 27 Why Report What Is Bad?
But what if you are not an elder and you come to know about some serious wrongdoing on the part of another Christian? Guidelines are found in the Law that Jehovah gave to the nation of Israel. The Law stated that if a person was a witness to apostate acts, sedition, murder, or certain other serious crimes, it was his responsibility to report it and to testify to what he knew. Leviticus 5:1 states: “Now in case a soul sins in that he has heard public cursing and he is a witness or he has seen it or has come to know of it, if he does not report it, then he must answer for his error.

This law was not restricted to crime within the nation of Israel.  Mordecai was praised for revealing a seditious plot against the King of Persia.  (Esther 2:21-23)  How does the Organization apply these verses?  Reading the rest of the August 15, 1997 article reveals that the application is restricted to within the congregation. There is no direction given to Jehovah’s Witnesses about reporting crimes such as sedition, murder, rape, or child sexual abuse to the superior authorities.  How could the slave that is supposed to be giving us food at the proper time not feed us this information over the past 65 years?

This helps us understand how the growing worldwide scandal into our mishandling of child sexual abuse and the almost complete lack of reporting by JW officials came about.  There simply was no direction from the slave on applying Romans 13:1-7 to this or any other crime.

So it seems that the claim made in paragraph 24 that “the holy spirit guided Christ’s followers” to properly understand Romans 13:1-7 is a gross misrepresentation and a lie—based on the definition given to us by Governing Body member Gerrit Losch.

It would appear that all this self-praise is yet another example of “talking the talk without walking the walk.”

Meleti Vivlon

Articles by Meleti Vivlon.
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