Examining Matthew 24, Part 4: "The End"

– posted by meleti

Hi, my name’s Eric Wilson.  There is another Eric Wilson on the Internet doing Bible-based videos but he is not connected to me in any way. So, if you do a search on my name but come up with the other guy, try instead my alias, Meleti Vivlon. I used that alias for years on my websites—meletivivlon.com, beroeans.net, beroeans.study—to avoid unnecessary persecution. It has served me well, and I still use it. It is a transliteration of two Greek words which mean “Bible study”.

This is now the fourth in our series of videos on the very controversial and often misinterpreted 24th chapter of Matthew. Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that they alone have unveiled the mysteries and true significance of Jesus’ words spoken on the Mount of Olives. In reality, they are just one of many religions who have misconstrued the true import and application of what Jesus was telling his disciples. Back in 1983, William R Kimball—not a Jehovah’s Witness—had the following to say about this prophecy in his book:

“A wrong interpretation of this prophecy has often resulted in a multitude of erroneous concepts, foolish theorizing, and fanciful speculations concerning the prophetic forecasts of the future. Like the “domino principle,” when the Olivet discourse is pushed out of balance, all related prophecies down the line are subsequently knocked out of alignment.”

“The pattern of forcing the Scriptures to bow before the “sacred cows” of prophetic tradition has often been the case when interpreting the Olivet discourse. Because the priority in interpreting has often been placed upon a prophetic system rather than upon the clear thrust of the word, there has been a common reluctance to accept the Scriptures at face value or in the proper contextual setting which the Lord intended to convey. This has often been baneful to the study of prophecy.”

From the book, What the Bible Says about the Great Tribulation by William R. Kimball (1983) page 2.

I had planned on moving forward with the discussion starting with verse 15, but a number of comments that were spawned by something I said in my previous video have caused me to do some additional research in defense of what I said, and as a result I have learned something very interesting.

It seems that some got the impression that when I said that Matthew 24:14 was fulfilled in the first century, I was also saying that the preaching of the good news ended then.  That is simply not the case. I realize that the power of JW indoctrination tends to cloud our minds in ways of which we are not even aware.

As one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, I was taught that the end to which Jesus referred in verse 14 was that of the current system of things.  Consequently, I was led to believe that the good news according to Jehovah’s Witnesses which I was preaching would come to its completion prior to Armageddon. In fact, not only would it end prior to Armageddon, but it would be replaced by a different message.  This continues to be the belief among Witnesses.

“This will not be the time to preach the “good news of the Kingdom.” That time will have passed. The time for “the end” will have come! (Matt 24:14) No doubt, God’s people will proclaim a hard-hitting judgment message. This may well involve a declaration announcing that Satan’s wicked world is about to come to its complete end.” (w15 7/15 p. 16, par. 9)

Of course, this completely ignores Jesus’ statement that “no man knows the day nor hour”.  He also said repeatedly that he will come as a thief.  A thief doesn’t broadcast to the world that he is about to rob your house.

Imagine, if you will, planting signs in the neighborhood, telling you that next week he’s going to rob your house.  That’s ridiculous. It’s ludicrous.  It’s outrageous. Yet that is precisely what Jehovah’s Witnesses intend to preach according to the Watchtower. They’re saying that Jesus will tell them in some way or another, or Jehovah will tell them, that it’s time to tell everybody that the thief is about to attack.

This teaching that the preaching of the good news will be replaced with a final message of judgment just before the end is not only unscriptural; it makes a mockery of God’s word.

It is foolishness of the highest order.  It is what comes from placing one’s trust in “nobles and the son of earthling man to whom no salvation belongs” (Ps 146:3).

This kind of indoctrinated mentality is very deep-seated, and can affect us in subtle, almost undetectable ways.  We might think we’re rid of it, when it suddenly raises its ugly little head and sucks us back in. For many witnesses, it is almost impossible to read Matthew 24:14 and not think that it applies to our day.

Let me clear this up.  What I believe is that Jesus was not telling his disciples about the completion of the preaching work but about its progress or reach.  Of course, the preaching work would go on long after Jerusalem was destroyed. Nevertheless, he was assuring them that the preaching of the good news would reach all the gentiles prior to the end of the Jewish system of things.  That turned out to be true.  No surprise there.  Jesus doesn’t get things wrong.

But what about me?  Am I wrong in my conclusion that Matthew 24:14 was fulfilled in the first century? Am I wrong in concluding that the end Jesus was referring to was the end of the Jewish system of things?

Either he was speaking about the end of the Jewish system of things, or he was referring to a different end. I see no basis in the context for the belief in a primary and secondary application. This is not a type/antitype situation. He only mentions one end.  So, let’s assume, despite the context, that it is not the end of the Jewish system of things.  What other candidates are there?

It has to be ‘an end’ that is linked to the preaching of the Good News.

Armageddon marks the end of the current system of things and is linked to the preaching of the good news. However, I see no reason to conclude he was speaking of Armageddon given all the evidence presented in the previous video. To sum up what we learned there: no one, including Jehovah’s Witnesses, is preaching the real Good News in all the inhabited earth and to all the nations at the present time.

If, in the future, the children of God manage to reach all the nations of the world with the true good news that Jesus preached, then we might reconsider our understanding, but to date there is no evidence to support that.

As I’ve stated before, my preference in Bible study is to go with exegesis. To let the Bible interpret itself. If we are to do that then we have to establish the criteria upon which to base our understanding of the meaning of any given passage of Scripture. There are three key elements to take into consideration in verse 14.

  • The nature of the message, i.e., the Good News.

  • The scope of the preaching.

  • The end of what?

Let’s start with the first one. What is the good news? As we determined in the last video, Jehovah’s Witnesses do not preach it. There is nothing in the book of Acts, which is the primary account of the first century preaching work, to indicate that early Christians went from place to place telling people they could become friends of God and thus be saved from worldwide destruction.

What was the essence of the good news that they preached? John 1:12 pretty much says it all.

“However, to all who did receive him, he gave authority to become God’s children, because they were exercising faith in his name” (John 1:12).

(By the way, unless otherwise quoted, I’m using the New World Translation for all scriptures in this video.)

You cannot become something you already are. If you are a son of God, you cannot become a son of God. That makes no sense. Prior to Christ’s coming, the only humans who had been children of God were Adam and Eve. But they lost out when they sinned. They became disinherited. They could no longer inherit everlasting life. All their children as a consequence were born outside the family of God. So, the good news is that we can now become children of God and grab hold of everlasting life because we can again be in a position to inherit that from our father.

“And everyone that has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands for the sake of my name will receive many times more and will inherit everlasting life.” (Mt 19:29)

Paul puts this very nicely when he writes to the Romans:

“. . .For all who are led by God’s spirit are indeed God’s sons. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery causing fear again, but you received a spirit of adoption as sons, by which spirit we cry out: “Abba, Father!” The spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are God’s children. If, then, we are children, we are also heirs—heirs indeed of God, but joint heirs with Christ. . .” (Romans 8:14-17)

We can now refer to the Almighty by a term of endearment: “Abba, Father”.  It is like saying Daddy, or Papa.  It is a term showing the respectful affection that a child has to a loving parent. Through this, we become his heirs, those who inherit everlasting life, and much more.

But there is more to the message of the good news. The immediate message of the good news is not of worldwide salvation, but of the choosing of the children of God.  However, that leads to the salvation of humankind. Paul continues:

What is the creation?  Animals are not saved by the good news. They continue on as they have always been. This message is for humans only. Why are they likened then to the creation? Because in their current state, they are not God’s children. They are really no different from animals in the sense that they are destined to die.

“I said to myself concerning the sons of men, “God has surely tested them in order for them to see that they are but beasts.” For the fate of the sons of men and the fate of beasts is the same. As one dies so dies the other; indeed, they all have the same breath and there is no advantage for man over beast, for all is vanity.” (Ecclesiastes 3:18, 19 NASB)

So, humanity – the creation – is freed from enslavement to sin and restored to the family of God through the revealing of the children of God who are being gathered now.

James tells us, “Because he willed it, he brought us forth by the word of truth, for us to be certain firstfruits of his creatures.” (James 1:18)

If we are to be firstfruits as children of God, then the fruits that follow must be the same. If you harvest apples at the beginning of the harvest, you harvest apples as the end of the harvest.  All become children of God. The only difference is in the sequence.

So, boiling it down to its essence, the good news is the declared hope that we can all return to the family of God with all the attendant benefits of sonship.  This is based on looking to Jesus as our savior.

The good news is about returning to the family of God as a child of God.

This preaching work, this declaration of hope for all humankind, when does it come to its end? Would it not be when there are no more humans who need to hear it?

If the preaching of the good news ends at Armageddon, that would leave billions out in the cold.  For example, what about the billions who will be resurrected after Armageddon? Upon their resurrection, won’t they be told they too can become children of god if they put faith in the name of Jesus?  Of course.  And isn’t that good news?  Is there better news than that possible?  I don’t think so.

That is so self-evident that it begs the question, why do Jehovah’s Witnesses insist that the preaching of the good news ends before Armageddon?  The answer is because the “good news” they are preaching amounts to this: “Join the organization of Jehovah’s Witnesses and be saved from eternal death at Armageddon, but don’t expect to get everlasting life for another thousand years if you behave yourself.”

But of course, that is not the good news. The good news is: “You can become a child of God and inherit everlasting life if you put faith in the name of Jesus Christ now.”

And what if you don’t put faith in Jesus so as to become a child of God now? Well, according to Paul, you remain part of the creation. When the children of God are revealed, then the creation will rejoice to see that they too can have the opportunity to become children of God. If you reject the offer at that time with the overwhelming evidence at hand, then it’s on you.

When does that good news stopping preached?

About the time that the last human is resurrected, wouldn’t you say? Is that connected to an end?

According to Paul, yes.

“However, now Christ has been raised up from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep [in death]. For since death is through a man, resurrection of the dead is also through a man. For just as in Adam all are dying, so also in the Christ all will be made alive. But each one in his own rank: Christ the firstfruits, afterward those who belong to the Christ during his presence. Next, the end, when he hands over the kingdom to his God and Father, when he has brought to nothing all government and all authority and power. For he must rule as king until [God] has put all enemies under his feet. As the last enemy, death is to be brought to nothing. (1Co 15:20-26)

At the end, when Jesus has reduced all government, authority, and power to nothing and even brought death to nothing, we can safely say that the preaching of the good news will have ended. We can also say that every human who has ever lived at any time, in any place, from any tribe, language, people or nation will have received the message of the good news.

So, if you prefer to look at this as an absolute fulfillment rather than a subjective or relative one, we can say unequivocally that at the end of the thousand-year reign of Christ this good news will have been preached in all the inhabited earth to every nation before the end.

I can only see two ways in which Matthew 24:14 can apply and meet all the criteria. One is relative and one is absolute.  Based on my reading of the context, I think Jesus was speaking relatively, but I cannot say that with absolute certainty.  I know others will prefer the alternative, and some even now, will continue to believe his words apply to the teaching of Jehovah’s Witnesses that the preaching of the good news ends just before Armageddon.

How important is it to understand exactly what he was referring to?  Well, putting the interpretation of Jehovah’s Witnesses to one side for the moment, the two possibilities we’ve discussed do not affect us in any way at the present time. I’m not saying we shouldn’t preach the good news. Of course, we should, whenever the opportunity presents itself.  That being said, with Matthew 24:14, we are not talking about a sign that predicts the nearness of the end.  That is what Witnesses have wrongly claimed and look at the harm it has done.

How often does one come home from a circuit assembly or regional convention and instead of feeling uplifted, one is riddled with guilt?  I remember as an elder how each circuit overseer visit was something we dreaded.  They were guilt trips.  The organization does not motive by love, but by guilt and fear.

The misinterpretation and misapplication of Matthew 24:14 puts a heavy burden on all Jehovah’s Witnesses, because it forces them to believe that if they don’t do their utmost and beyond in preaching from door-to-door and with the carts, they will be blood guilty.  People will die eternally who could have been saved if only they had worked a little harder, sacrificed a little more.  I did a search in the Watchtower library on self-sacrifice using the token: “self-sacrifc*”.  I got over a thousand hits!  Guess how many I got from the Bible?  Not a one.

‘Nuf said.

Thank you for watching.

Archived Comments

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  • Comment by Nightingale on 2019-11-12 14:51:38

    Thanks once again. This is rather obvious but what also confirms he must have meant the end in 70 AD is seen from the immediate context: ...and then the end will come. When you therefore see the disgusting thing.... - so he continues to talk about "the end" of the city/temple/nation right away and how to survive from that end.

  • Comment by a watcher on 2019-11-12 18:56:50

    I don't do guilt. The CAs and RCs leave me exhausted, not refreshed, and that's why I stopped going to them. But I still serve Jehovah as one of JWs, but I'm not there to serve the earthly org. I'm there to pursue personal relationships with Jehovah and Jesus.

  • Comment by Nightingale on 2019-11-13 17:34:52

    Hi Eric, one thing came to my mind. You said: "Prior to Christ’s coming, the only humans who had been children of God were Adam and Eve".

    How about Israel though? Jehovah called that nation "my son, my firstborn" in Exodus 4:22. There are other verses too where the people are called God's sons, like Deuteronomy 1:30, 31; 8:5; 14:1, 32:5; 18-20; Isaiah 1:2, 63:16, Jeremiah 3:14, Malachi 1:6

    And the same good news about the possibility to become kings and priests was of course also available to them (Exodus 19:6) like it is for those who want to become God's children today. As the nation they didn't keep the covenant but some faithful individuals did.

    So is there any difference between those individuals and those God's children who have been anointed with holy spirit during the Christian era and who remain faithful until the end?

    • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2019-11-13 21:30:34

      Some of the scriptures you cited express the father/son relationship as a simile. Jehovah also refers to the collective nation as his son. He told David that he would treat Solomon as his son. Again, a simile. The opportunity to become adopted or return to a status of true sonship only came into being with Jesus. This isn't to say that the opportunity could not be applied retroactively, but that application occurred only at the time of Jesus. Thus, Abraham was not counted as a son of God by his faith, but only as God's friend.

      • Reply by Nightingale on 2019-11-14 02:55:13

        That's true. Isn't it still true though, that the faithful ones of old will nevertheless have the same reward as Christians as children of God will receive? (Hebrews 11:40) Doesn't Daniel 12:13 for example refer to the 1st resurrection?

    • Reply by Nightingale on 2019-11-14 02:35:26

      Hello Just Asking

      Its always been a bit unclear to me if Exodus 19:6 refers to the "original" system and law with the Levites and all that - or is it talking about something that would have happened later if the whole nation had been faithful and accepted Jesus. The previous verse states: "IF you will indeed obey My voice and i keep My covenant". Well they did not so was the verse 6 ever truly fulfilled?

      Peter quotes that verse when talking about the Christian congregation in 1 Peter 2:9. In that case he meant that ALL Christians would serve as kings and priests as children of God, not just some of them (like Wt teaches). And in that passage he also mentions natural Israel and how they stumbled over Christ. I get the impression that Israel failed to do what Exodus 19:6 had said about them - and the Christian congregation or spiritual Israel replaced them in that regard.

      But I don't know if that's the case, I'm just wondering.

      • Reply by Nightingale on 2019-11-14 06:26:50

        Hello, thanks for your thoughts,

        I don't believe in any heavenly hope either. The problems that need to be fixed are on Earth so the persons doing the fixing would logically be here too. All the going to heaven business is just a big misunderstanding imo.

        The distinction between the calling and choosing is interesting, that's something I haven't really thought about that much.

        Sure it wouldn't be practical that everyone would be sitting on thrones. I think it's more like different people having different "jobs", some with more responsibilities, some with less, some more prominent, some less - but nevertheless they all would be working for the same goal, fixing the planet and taking care of the "creation".

    • Reply by Alithia on 2019-11-14 05:24:09

      Hello Nightingale, in the ancient Jewish culture, expressions such as sons, brothers, father did not strictly have the meaning that we associate with them today.

      Often these expressions had connotations that were more than just familial in nature.
      Often they were merely a similarly only to indicate the quality or to draw to attention certain aspects with regard to the relationship. These expressions were also often used to denote such things as kinship, unity and purpose, or status such as in a hierarchical situation.

      One needs to look closely at the context and consider not just what the Bible is "saying", but rather also what it is actually trying to teach us.

    • Reply by Helanren on 2019-11-15 12:47:19

      Exactly! When the nation of Israel is called 'holy' (Hebrew: qadosh), it's the abstraction that is holy, not every individual. Otherwise it wouldn't be necessary to mention that priests are holy (Lev 21:7). Korah, Dathan and Abiram made a big mistake: they fought every Israelite was holy and could perform priestly duties (Lev 16:3).
      Another problem is that the Hebrew word translated as holy (qadosh) has a (slightly) different meaning than the Greek one (hagios). Qadosh has a meaning of ‘uniqueness’, hagios focuses more on moral purity. The Israelite nation couldn’t decide by themselves if they were holy or not. God did. They could live up to their status by being (ceremonially) clean (Hebrew: tahor).
      The NWT renders Leviticus 19:2 wrong. They render it as: “Speak to the entire assembly of the Israelites and tell them, ‘You should be holy, because I, Jehovah your God, am holy.” Actually the Hebrew simply says: “You will be holy because I … am holy.”.

      -The Lost World of the Israelite Conquest, John H. Walton & J. Harvey Walton, p. 103-117.

  • Comment by Frankie on 2019-11-13 18:02:16

    Thank you Eric for clear explanation of Matt 24:14. I like the way how you analysed this verse through 3 key elements, how you connected Matt 24:14 with 1 Cor 15:20-26, as well as how you emphasized the nature of the God News with respect to preaching after Armageddon.

    I don't like when someone starts speculation about second or third meaning of some words. This can be dangerous and could be very doctrinal and, moreover, it usually has nothing to do with the essence of the gospel - which is crucial. When discussing any Bible verses with former JW's or PIMO's, I always accentuate "Let the words have exactly the meaning as should have". This is what you are doing. Thank you again for your hard work.

  • Comment by Frankie on 2019-11-13 18:03:56

    Hi Just Asking.

    With respect to your comments on 144 000 and on some other topics, I'd like to say to you: "You did a good job" :o) .

  • Comment by lazarus on 2019-11-13 22:05:39

    Great thanks Eric,

    I’ve contemplated this point about preaching and the urgency of it. Is 2000 years urgency enough. I think 1 Peter 3:15 is important to factor witnessing.
    Peter says “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear“ KJV
    Notice that The Apostle is saying- go preach-no, but only to be ready to give an answer to anyone that ask you for the reason of your hope. Right! Is he contradicting Jesus. Obviously not But here’s the point why don’t we get this from Peter who was apparently in Babylon writing his letter? I think because He was in Babylon haha right. The Gentiles. And his message. As we would say “It’s cool bro - if someone says , ”why are you so joyous, what’s your deal man” ok well because my hope 1 Peter 3:15

    I was reading 2 Cor 4:4-6 & I see the connection with 1 Co 15:20-26

    Ultimately preaching or explaining the Gospel is so glorious to one who is enlightened by God because it is Jehovah who awakens us to see the gospel and his glory in the face of Jesus. So maybe to much is said about 1 point when the reality is the gospel is multifaceted with ultimately the child of God has their spiritual vision opened by God to see the Glory of Christ. And by the face of Christ the Glory of God.

    Thanks Eric for your bible study.

    • Reply by Alithia on 2019-11-14 05:17:22

      Good point Lazarus. We are not obliged to get into people's faces and use pressure sales techniques to corner people into having to listen to what we want to tell them!

      Paul said we are not peddlers of the good news, so we should not be like that.
      However as you point out if people upon observing our conduct, possibly our charity work, our general day-to-day disposition, or our view of other people or certain events; when they enquire about our worldview or about certain things and they take the initiative to do so, then we should be ready to give a good reason for why we are the way we are. Share with them the fact that we are Christians and that we have a kingdom hope which affects the way we think speak and act.
      This has the most powerful effect especially when it is the other person who engages and has an open mind which is most important.

      However when we bail up people at their doors early in the morning in inclement weather unannounced and uninvited in inclement weather and expect them to listen to an extensive discourse on a subject they have not thought of before or perhaps even care about and then on top of that offer them books that further expand on what we have to say this only raises people's defences. I remember throughout the early 80s being able to distribute a large number of watchtower and awake magazines. But by the close of the 80s and certainly by the middle of the 90s here in Australia when we were offering literature for free! I could not even give away the magazines. I could not hassle the homeowner by trying to thrust them in their hand or towards them so that they would accept it, people have become completely resistant to the door-to-door work. And very fed up!

      It is simply not an effective manner of sharing the good news. And I agree with you this is not what is meant by sharing the good news when it comes to methodology.

      Love to all from Alithia

  • Comment by Leonardo Josephus on 2019-11-14 04:18:39

    Another excellent video, Eric. You have raised before the idea that the good news is that we can all become children of God again, welcomed back into the family, but you have added some extra thoughts this time. That is indeed wonderful news. I probably will not know how wonderful until we get there.

    I was reading (sorry I cannot remember where) that the signs in sun moon and stars are some sort of hyperbole. Be that as it may, your articles, and the comments got me thinking.
    This country is described as a nation of shopkeepers. but only a small number are shopkeepers, but yet that seems how we are identified.
    Israel could have been a kingdom of priests. But only a limited number would be priests.
    You will be kings and priests basically means this is what will identify you, and, if you like, they will have the monopoly of kings and priests.
    Thus the joint heirs may not all be kings and priests, but they will all be part of the royal family, just as a royal family one king or queen on the throne. And no doubt many will have priestly duties, just as many will have kingly responsibilities.
    Nothing is as clear as we might like it to be. What a danger there is in jumping to conclusions !

  • Comment by Gogetter on 2019-11-14 07:45:01

    Some comments here state that the door to door ministry is not effective and I disagree.
    We can certainly criticize and point out the organization’s many false Bible doctrines (eisegesis) but if we are honest ,putting those aside,we must give them credit for the preaching and teaching work especially the door to door ministry that has been the main method since the organization’s beginning, Which is I dare say responsible for the millions of members today.(minus born in’s)

    Just take the emotional feelings and disagreements with certain methods we may have and look at JUST the facts.

    1-approximately 8 million worldwide engaged in preaching

    2-unified message with same Bible, books,magazines etc

    3-detailed FS records kept of individual FS time,territories, NH’s,RV’s,interested people etc. with a determination to cover all congregation assigned territory.

    4-Weekly (CLAM) in depth training for all on public speaking, presentations, how to conduct Bible studies etc that even those with little or no education can use for the preaching work.
    Organized (almost daily)meetings for FS for those who go out at various times to meet up with others to go out so you’re not “on your own”

    5- Hourly Goal setting to reach titles and recognition like publisher,aux. pioneer,reg. Pioneer.

    6-many methods employed of reaching people, informal, door to door,carts, businesses,online, JW broadcasting (televangelists) and now movies (Holly-wood)

    Those are some of the facts we can’t argue with. We can disagree with method and message in some cases, but to be honest most religious organizations, and for that matter,commercial sales companies, would love to be able to accomplish this if they could and keep in mind,accomplish it with an all volunteer force.
    The organized ministry of Jehovah’s Witnesses is truly a remarkable accomplishment wether you believe it’s from cult think or from God
    We must admit that!

    One last thing, although we here are awake,some in and some out of the organization keep the following in mind please.
    Although the brothers and sisters who are engaged in this work by and large do it because they love Jehovah and want to follow his Son.
    Most receive great satisfaction from the preaching work no matter how mislead on doctrine or think they are earning their salvation they do this work.
    I’m sure that the reader of hearts Jehovah takes that into account
    with every individual Witness and so should we.

    • Reply by Nightingale on 2019-11-14 08:01:19

      I agree with the last sentence and paragraph. But I also feel sorry for them because its a great burden for them like Eric said in the video. They feel they have to do more and more and more. So many have burned out from it and suffer from health problems because of it. Sometimes I wish I could say to them: give yourself a break already, you have done enough.

      But is it really effective despite of all the weekly training and all that? Maybe in some countries. But in Western world just look at the witnesses at the cart playing with their phones... that tells it all.

      • Reply by Gogetter on 2019-11-14 12:11:18

        Hi Nightingale
        I agree the friends do get burned out, but they must remember that “for each one will carry HIS OWN load” Gal. 6:5 the problem is most let the Organization determine what that load is, which is not based on Jesus teachings as Matt 11:30 says “my yoke is kindly and load is light”
        So those who burn out are responsible, not the Organization who they allow them to put the heavy load on them.

        • Reply by vitisbp on 2019-11-15 02:58:16

          Hi Gogetter,
          You said, “So those who burn out are responsible, not the Organization who they allow them to put the heavy load on them.” What you say is true. But the Organization does enlist the aid of elders, family members, and all in the congregation to pressure individuals to always do “more, ...for example for young people to “pioneer”. In matters of law, when a contract is involved, this type of pressure could be called “undue influence”, a form of harassment, and might be legally actionable. Of course, there is no contract for pioneering. But my point is that stronger are taking advantage of weaker in ways that the weaker may believe they have no choice.

          • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2019-11-18 07:48:26

            I get your point GoGetter. Really, they have no authority over anyone other than that which the individual grants. However, does that place all the responsibility and blame on the shoulders of the individual?

            If we compare them to the Pharisees of old--an apt comparison in my view--we have these words from our Lord to guide us:

            “. . .Then Jesus spoke to the crowds and to his disciples, saying: “The scribes and the Pharisees have seated themselves in the seat of Moses. Therefore, all the things they tell you, do and observe, but do not do according to their deeds, for they say but they do not practice what they say. They bind up heavy loads and put them on the shoulders of men, but they themselves are not willing to budge them with their finger.” (Mt 23:1-4)

    • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2019-11-14 08:32:03

      I remember something from years back when I analyzed how everyone in our very large congregation "got the truth". There were only two who were contacted cold in the door-to-door work.

      It may be a way for opening up a new territory, but in reality people take to a religion because of other reasons. This explains why the Seventh Day Adventists who only had a 15 year head start on Russell have managed to reach 200 countries and claim over 18 million adherents. That's just one example.

      The preaching work was a great way of funding the publishing company in the beginning, and it now serves to isolate witnesses and bind them together in a common work.

      I'm not saying that going door-to-door is wrong. It's just one method. Paul didn't use it, but instead used public places to preach--the local synagogue, the market place, even by a river. Whatever works.

      • Reply by Gogetter on 2019-11-14 11:59:25

        Hi Eric
        I agree with you on the Organization’s motives to keep the R&F busy and isolated the fact that most preaching was done in public places during Paul’s day and today they would consider that cart work, although the friends are instructed to stand there like statues with fake smiles and only speak when spoken too. But my experience in the 4 congregations I have been in the majority where contacted in door to door. That said we do see the shift from printing to media as almost all publishing companies have already made that move long ago and WT is following from behind. The uniqueness of the JW work is their claim to fame and supplies the tool by which the old saying “idle hands is the devils playground “ so it can be busy work. Also to most JW’s it offers them a religion that actually gives them a sense of accomplishment to be active in their faith and have a good feeling of preaching when they can do one on one with another human on the scriptures rather than sitting in a church and leaving that to the pastor/priest etc. as most religions do, you come to us we don’t come to you attitude.
        There are many things that could be discussed about this topic, sorry I got off the rails with this and maybe it can be another topic for you, lol as if you need more to do, plus if memory serves me you have one in the archives somewhere!
        Thanks Brother

    • Reply by Leonardo Josephus on 2019-11-14 17:15:34

      The methods work, or rather they have worked in the past. Have a look around the congregations you know, and ask how many have come in during the last 30, 20,10, or 5 years. And while you are there, how many have left - not gone elsewhere, not died, but left. That is then the net growth for all the hours of preaching. Most of the growth is from the born ins, is it not ? The Internet has meant that many can now find out a lot more about us than was the case when I became as Witness, when we did not, and probably could not , check what we were being told, and when we were so bamboozled by the types, antitypres, and interpretations that we just did not have the ability to think that what we were being told was wrong.
      Nevertheless, Go-getter, I have to agree that to get so many to share in such a large world wide way, in the witnessing work, is impressive. But how many can really defend their faith. It might be compared to a factory where everyone is doing a very simple repetitive job, as was promoted in the 19th century. Is that enough ? Certain other religions have expanded by building schools, hospitals. They too must have many members who could not defend much of their faith.
      Yet Jesus said that true worshippers would worship the father with spirit and truth. Can he possibly be satisfied with the status quo ?

      • Reply by Gogetter on 2019-11-14 18:31:20

        Great points LJ!
        My main point was not to focus on the method of fulling our Christian obligations in following our Lord and Savior’s example, but to acknowledge that wether Jehovah was behind the early organization or not the organization has been successful in accomplishing the spreading some of the basics of Bible truth that I believe most here agree with.
        Making known the true Gods name, Jesus is the created literal son, true condition of the dead, what the Kingdom of God is, and that true disciples of Christ would preach the Good news of the Kingdom etc.
        I agree all the so called deep things of the prophetic books, the current nonsensical overlapping generations, the Devils deluding influences on the GB of the 1914 false parousia ,1919 teachings, Blood doctrine, child abuse cover up......I could go on but you get the point. Most of the R&F do not know of these or could never even attempt to explain them In theory much less use the Bible to support these things.
        But what they do know is the basics we all were attracted to in the beginning. That’s all that is needed, the simple things that Jesus taught.
        Witnesses are merchants of hope, with promises of a better future, resurrection of dead loved ones, paradise earth, a United brotherhood and just trying to be good moral humans. IMHO there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that!
        Most JW’s are content with the milk of the scriptures and leave the tortuous task to others (GB, here and a myriad of others) to try to interpret the scriptures for the rest of us. Those Scriptural “ Deep Thinkers” attempt to find the “answers” and come to a consensus......how’s that working out so far?
        I know I might sound like a JW apologists and if you have ever read any of my post here over the last several years you know that’s not true.
        What I am is a realist and I sometimes get the big picture when it comes to this topic. So please indulge my opinions, they are harmless I assure you.
        Your Brother in Christ

        • Reply by Alithia on 2019-11-19 04:18:41

          Hello Gogetter, you may like to look up a man called Henry Grew. He preached for decades truths about the condition of the dead, the immortality of the soul, hell fire etc, before Russel was even born.

          Russel only patched together a theology from the various sources available at the time and not as the Org would like to portray him as a man who came to his own conclusions guided and used by God. These basics you call have been in circulation for centuries before Russell.

          Satan is an angel of light. The best lies are the ones that have some truth in them. Satan knows this and still uses this tactic to fool people like we were, like you were, and possibly still to a degree still.

          Satan said to Jesus. Throw yourself down and the angels will catch you, turn these rocks into bread etc. You get the point??

          The organisation Jehovah's Witnesses says to people here are some "basic truths", sweet, now go to mindlessness with an additional truck load of baloney!

          How can you say "what is wrong with that"? Referring to the some good you think the JW Org has promoted. Context is everything! And I agree the big picture is the main thing, or put another way on the balance of things what conclusion should be reached.

          Hitler loved art! He "collected" from all over Europe. He loved people, and found enjoyment in relationships, as he had a girl friend! He had millions of people as his "guests" in special accommodation. He had lots of friends who all wore the same black clothes with black arm bands. Such a cool guy! He loved good food too! Just look at the pictures of Hitlers "guests"from Ravens-brook prison camp. He loved animals. Although he had a few dogs hat he let occasionally out to tear pregnant women apart! But "these things aside" as you say we could conclude Hitler did a lot of good things! He gave them the people's car the Volkswagen. He created employment and many other infrastructure projects in Germany at the time. There are still many thousands around the World who think so! Probably nearly as much or even more than JWs number today! And you do not need to have a skinhead hair cut these days to identify with this growing group of people. You can look like and every day average Joe blow!

          You cannot arbitrarily set aside anything you think may suggest Jehovah never had anything to do with the Org or used them. How do you decide? On numbers? How and with what authority? Where do you start and end?

          And besides the "simple things" you mention as being the mainstay. That we can be thankful to the organisation for, I would like you to consider what Paul said at Romans Chapter 1 verse 20 His invisible qualities are seen by the things made, even his eternal power and God ship.

          Also Romans chapter 2 verse 14 in discussing those who were not Christians and yet conducted themselves in a manner similar to Christians. Romans 214 says for when people of the nations who do not have law do by nature the things of the law these people although not having law are a law to themselves they are the very ones who demonstrate the matter of the law to be written in their hearts while their consciences bearing witness with them on by and by their own thoughts they are being accused or even excused.

          No one needed Russell or Judge Rutherford or any of the subsequent presidents or the organisation to teach them anything such as what you call the basics. Romans points out clearly that everything we need to do no is written in our hearts and in our God given conscience and in nature.

          Russell Rutherford did not do anyone any favours in any way. They even discouraged Bible reading as being a futile exercise! It reminds me of what Jesus said about the religious leaders in his day, they are not going into the kingdom and they are hindering others from doing so as well!
          As Jesus also said the blind guides are leading the other will both fall into the pit! Why not just admit it draw a line underneath the whole thing and start afresh.

          I do not mean for minor things such as being encouraged to read the Scriptures, I mean as an organisation it has been in opposition to people really coming to know Jesus and Jehovah.

          Christ came to preach about the kingdom! People needed to know the clear truth regarding this kingdom! Preaching and teaching about some distortion, untruth and other things that contradict and diminish this vital message cannot be spoken of in virtuous terms!

          Love to all from Alithia.

          • Reply by Gogetter on 2019-11-20 06:06:59

            Greetings Alithia,
            Well I don’t know where to start with your comments, other than to say I think you missed the initial point of my post, I stated on the first post the following...

            “Just take the emotional feelings and disagreements with certain methods we may have and look at JUST the facts. “

            I see from your comments you have some strong emotional feelings about this and you did not address the facts.

            I gave no credit or praise to either Russell, Rutherford or anyone else for that matter, and as for Henry Crew or anyone prior to him who had discovered the Basic Bible truths before them is no big surprise as anyone whoever sincerely reads the Bible would be able to come to the same conclusions on the basics.
            I mean that’s why the book was inspired by God in the first place right? For all to read and be guided by it, not just a select few.

            I won’t even respond to your Hilter analogy as in my opinion it has no relevance to the discussion, and certainly see no comparison to any individual attempting to interpret scriptures no matter how misguided they might be including the founders of the organization.

            I would respectfully ask how do you currently accomplish your Christian ministry today as I assume you are no longer an active JW?

            Your Brother in Christ

            • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2019-11-20 08:58:58

              Hi go-getter,

              If I could dip my toe into this pool and address the question of accomplishing our Christian ministry, I would start by saying it's a common enough question coming from exJW's and PIMO witnesses. The issue is that the premise of the question comes from the indoctrination of the organization and as such is flawed. The idea is that Matthew 24:14 requires some sort of worldwide preaching work which can only be accomplished by going door-to-door and more recently standing beside carts. This preaching work must be accomplished before Armageddon comes, and therefore we need only look around for a group that is doing this work to find the true religion.

              What I recommend is that anyone with this thought – and I admit I had it doo because of decades of indoctrination – read the book of acts to see if that work was accomplished in the first century in the way that Jehovah's Witnesses do it.

              What such a study will reveal is that they did no door-to-door work at all. Also, not everyone did the preaching work since only some had the gift of evangelizing. The good news was spread through the conduct of Christians which won over more converts than any reasoned arguments would. On top of all of that, the purpose of the preaching work is not to save humanity from death at Armageddon. That's just another JW misdirection to hide the fact that all Christians are called to be children of God.

              The Seventh-day Adventists began about 15 years before Russell and do not go door-to-door in any meaningful way. Nevertheless, they have outstripped the growth of Jehovah's Witnesses and support missionaries in over 200 lands. The best way to accomplish a Christian ministry is to live an exemplary Christian life and take the opportunity to bear witness to Jesus with whomever will listen.

              What witnesses are doing is preaching to other Christians in an effort to get them to switch from one brand of Christianity to another brand. Their preaching work is not about spreading the good news so much as it is a membership drive.

              I know that saying that things are worse now than ever before will often get an angry response from some. I also know that this is largely a matter of perception. That said, it is my perception that things are worse now than before. Things may have always been as bad as they are now at the highest levels, but the trickle-down effect of that injustice among the "upper management" has become more manifest now than I think it ever was.

              For me, one example of this is the way people are treated who do not go to meetings often. I hear this all the time. There is an unofficial shunning that goes on now for anyone who just starts to drift away. I remember not that long ago that people who never came to meetings but only showed up at the memorial, would also show up at conformal congregation events, like picnics, and be treated well.

              It seems the current atmosphere in the organization is that if you are not one of us, you're against us; and to be one of us, it's not enough to maintain a casual association. You have to be a gung-ho "one of us" to be treated well.

              In any case, these are all perceptions and trying to establish an accurate assessment is beyond our means. I think we can all agree that the current state of the organization is abysmal and so caustic to the exercise of free thought and free expression as to qualify it as oppressive and cultlike.

              • Reply by Gogetter on 2019-11-21 06:56:27

                Greetings Brother Wilson and Frankie

                I first want to apologize for my comments that have highjacked the original article you presented, as I now find myself appearing to be defending the Organization’s method and message in their WW preaching campaign.

                I totally agree with your last comments and feel the same, as I have witnessed the way the organization has weaponized the preaching of the good news against its own people and I don’t agree with their doomsday message.
                I thought I had clearly stated that in my previous comments, and apparently I did not. To be Clear.....I do not!

                That said to wrap up my part of this discussion and address Frankie as well, I know there are many ways other than preaching we should engage in to fulfill our “personal” Christian ministry and one only needs to look at Jesus life to see what that involves. There is no need to list them here and I realize as most on this site do, that the organization is only focused on the one aspect of the ministry and that is the preaching and disciple making work.

                I humbly admit Eric that I am a work in progress and that there may still be some hangover effect from my decades of indoctrination from the organization.
                But as even you have progressed from your earlier beliefs, writings and understandings from the time you started this website to present, I pray that I continue to progress in a better understanding of the Scriptures and thank all who participate here as the discussions are an aid to that end.
                That said I personally love actively preaching the good news of God’s Kingdom
                and it’s King Christ Jesus, and that’s the only message I preach! The Holy Spirit I pray for moves me to do this,Very simple.

                For me, even before becoming a witness these are just a few Scriptures that I take my guidance from and I don’t expect others to view it as I do. ( I gave that up when I woke up years ago)

                From BSB

                Matt 28:19-20 All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey all that I have commanded you.

                Matt 4:18 As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, He saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen. 19 “Come, follow Me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.” 20 And at once they left their nets and followed Him.

                Rom. 10:14 -15 14 How then can they call on the One in whom they have not believed? And how can they believe in the One of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone to preach? 15 And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”

                2 Tim 4:2 Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and encourage with every form of patient instruction.
                5 But you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.

                ministry= diakonias. Server

                Evangelizer= euaggelistés bringer of good news

                These both indicate action from the individual

                I know this is a very broad and deep subject on so many levels and everyone has their own interpretation, but I do find it interesting that most exJW’s from the comments I have seen over the years are eager to drop any form of active preaching,( I’m not promoting any particular method) teaching and disciple making work after leaving the org. They seem to have taken the stance most other religions have “you come to us.”
                Granted this is likely due to the abusive nature and incorrect message imposed upon them as a witness, but that does not negate the example of Jesus and the early Christians that followed his footsteps closely.

                Peace and Love, Your Brother in Christ

                • Reply by Frankie on 2019-11-21 13:48:40

                  Dear brother,

                  as to me, thank you for your sincere explanation of your position. You accurately captured the aim of my question. Why I asked this? Because several of the PIMO brothers I want to help, are still under the Organisation's "preach, preach” pressure at the expense of other acts of Christian love. I think, our Christian ministry should be balanced according to specific situation and personal conditions.

                  I also consider preaching as important. It is "work” that is very joyful and refreshing (I humbly commented it in the latest Tadua's article). Your Bible quotes are nice. Another one is important for me, as well:
                  "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor.” Luke 4:18.
                  What a mission! It is a wonderful work when it is done with love, for our Lord whom we love.

                  God bless you. Frankie

                • Reply by Meleti Vivlon on 2019-11-22 09:00:40

                  Hi GoGetter,

                  I don't worry about things like this very much. We all have different opinions and understandings and there really are only a few deal breakers in the Christian congregation – denying that Christ came in the flesh being one – so I appreciate the openness we should all feel to express ourselves. We are progressing to the fullness of the Christ and what really matters is not a head full of knowledge but a heart full of love. I think we all on that path.

                  We are at peace my brother,


            • Reply by Frankie on 2019-11-20 17:50:52

              Hi Gogetter.

              Could I ask you to tell me, please, what your idea of Christian ministry is? Perhaps you could list at least 7-8 types of this ministry and their content, based on Bible quotes, to clarify the term "Christian ministry." Because this concept may be different for different denominations.
              (Alithia sorry, Gogetter originally addressed you.)

              Thank you. Love to you, your brother Frankie.

            • Reply by Alithia on 2019-11-21 00:10:29

              Just one more itsy bitsy bit of info as I missed you latest post. By the admission of the Org there are 8 million JWs but only about 10,000 partaking of the emblems.

              That is the total number of Christians according to the biblical standard. As Christians are anointed are they not? There are not two types of Christians as the witnesses suggest.

              So the real figure for all of the efforts of the JWs Org is 10,000 Christians over the last 50 years!

              And one should also take into account WT articles suggesting presently many may partake as a result of a mental illness, past religious beliefs, prideful ambitions, and just plain misled. SO realistically the number is far smaller than this.

              So now the results look a lot worse using the bench mark as set by the Org.

    • Reply by Alithia on 2019-11-16 03:50:13

      I would disagree that most to engage in this work do it because they love Jehovah and want to follow his son!

      Yes that is part of the narrative, however why the need for the huge amount of pressure to guilt people and to threaten and warn them of eternal damnation if they do not engage in this work? Why the continued pressure?

      And why is it that when people wake up they do not engage in this work using this methodology?

      Using your reasoning then I suppose we could also consider remarkable other endeavours such as the Wall of China and the building of the pyramids! Yes those people thought they were serving God of some sort, they expended their whole lives in the project.

      I just think it's a contradiction in terms to be congratulating or complementing a work such as the preaching by Jehovah's Witnesses considering all things.

      Love from Alithia.

  • Comment by Fani on 2019-11-15 05:42:06

    Oui je suis d'accord : la bonne nouvelle est de devenir des enfants de Dieu grâce à la mort et à la résurrection de Christ.
    Oui, cette bonne nouvelle continuera à être prêchée à tous les ressuscités et tous ceux qui n'en n'ont jamais entendu parlé et qui seront préservés au jour de la colère de Dieu.
    Je n'avais jamais pensé à cet aspect. C'est très intéressant. Merci

    Oui, je regrette de n'avoir pas été assez précise dans la nature de la bonne nouvelle durant mes 50 ans de prédication.

    Non, je ne regrette pas toutes les heures passées à inciter les gens à aimer Dieu et à lire la Bible.
    Les moments passés de porte en porte à etudier ou échanger sur des pensées spirituelles font partie de mes plus grandes joies. Je suis souvent rentrée chez moi après la prédication le cœur gonflé de joie.
    Toute seule, étant timide, je n'aurais pas été capable de le faire.

    Mes parents ont connu Dieu (mon père se disait athée) grâce à des pionniers venus à  leur porte. J'ai connu un couple de frère et sœur qui ont sauvé leur mariage (ils étaient déjà séparés) grâce à des témoins venus à leur porte.

    Phil 1 : 15 "Certains, c’est vrai, prêchent le Christ par envie et rivalité, mais d’autres par bienveillance... Qu’importe ! De toute manière, que les intentions soient mauvaises ou sincères, Christ est annoncé, et je m’en réjouis"

    Si les adventiste ont fait mieux. C'est bien. L'important c'est que tous nous essayions de réconcilier le monde avec Dieu grâce à l'enseignement du Christ.
    C'est vrai qu'aujourd'hui le meilleur moyen n'est pas le porte à porte. Les gens sont absents. Les gens en ont assez d'être sollicités par beaucoup de démarchage.

    Que notre exemple de vie soit un bon témoignage toujours prêts à défendre notre foi.


    • Reply by Alithia on 2019-11-16 03:44:53

      Oui Oui Fani, Merci Boukoo! Do not read French but it seems so right anyway!

  • Comment by Alithia on 2019-11-20 21:50:53

    Hello Gogetter. I do not think I missed your point at all. I rather think maybe it is a case of you arbitrarily deciding what does or does not constitute acceptable argumentation, and wishing to frame the discussion only within parameters that are acceptable to you and your point of view. I will clarify latter.

    Firstly I will answer you directly with regard to your question as to how I accomplish my ministry at present.
    I have volunteered to visit the elderly in retirement villages. Under the direction of the charitable organisations I visit those who have no family and are lonely and basically have no one to speak to except the other residents and the nursing staff. At visiting times they remain in their rooms while others across the hall or next to them are surrounded by family and friends who visit to cheer them up and make them feel better about themselves. I find this most necessary and as filling a dire need for some elderly folk who at the end of their lives feel abandoned, and as of little value to society, and with nothing to offer. The charitable organisations are amazed that anyone would offer to do this work as there are few if any who think this to be a good idea to offer themselves in this way. I feel like the apostle Paul who approached a lame man who was begging for alms. Paul said I have no money but I have something better. In the name of Jesus get up and walk!!! While I too have no money, and money is not what these folks need, I have made some time and an interest factor. And so in the name of Jesus as a Christian I say to these individuals let’s talk!!! The outcome is nowhere near as dramatic. Hopefully the discussion steers to spiritual subjects that people at this stage of life are more than willing to consider. I have not met one who does not want to discuss the length of life, life’s difficulties and the meaning of life!

    Another way I accomplish my ministry is that with a changed attitude to those in need I am more loving and responsive to the needs of others. When in the Org one is told not to apportion resources to charities, because it does not advance the “kingdom work”. Recently when I was oversees in Turkey I noticed some street people scavenging through the rubbish at the end of the day to survive. Some of them were fatherless children around the age of 6-12. Others were adult women. Normally I would have walked past thinking the “Kingdom” would fix these things and my resources would be better directed to the Org. Or I would have offered only a token amount to these people, if at all. However now with a better attitude reflecting that of Jesus I withdrew substantial amounts and gave it to those people. The look on their faces, especially the children was a great reward and I nearly cried thinking previously how numbed I was to the needs of others due to the Org for decades. I continue to be as generous as I can to those I come in direct contact who are in material need. Ties and suits to wear to church or meetings are not on my list of things I can or would supply.

    Like the Apostle Paul encouraged, work hard and save some to have something more to share with those who are in need. Now I am free to work a little more and I do have more to give to those who are in need. Including my family!

    I go on atheist web sites and engage with atheists who think they have all of the arguments as to why God would not exist. I refute their arguments and expose the weakness of the arguments and promote the arguments for the existence of God. Ultimately there is no way to do this without having to explain Gods purpose and the good news of the kingdom when making a reply. I find this very gratifying and it is sharpening my responses and my ability to give a reply to those who ask a reason for my faith in God. I also get the opportunity to direct what appear to be sincere ones to this site if they would like more specific answers to doctrinal questions etc.

    Thank you to the hosts of this site!

    Indeed even on this site I engage as much as I can to try and get to the truth of matters as pertaining to the Kingdom good news.
    I also for the first time engage more with people at work around philosophical discussions, political discussions, cultural and social issues that often lead to stating that I am a Christian and an explanation as to the hope within me. There is no “shut down” as a JW and people are amicable to discuss matters with Christians but not with JW wierdos. There are just too many issues with the Org adding child abuse now that shuts down any opportunity for a rational discussion about the validity and necessity of Christianity and the good news.
    I am aware of a few ex JWs who have lost their faith due to the trauma and disillusionment due to the Org. Initially I associate with them only showing hospitality, love and listening to their stories. I have succeeded to turn some back to faith in God and see the separation between the Org and what the bible really teaches to use a painful well-worn phrase. I also point them to this site for spiritual refreshment, which some have.
    Also I am toying with the idea of starting my own channel to focus on a set of ex JWs that I think could benefit from considering certain material.

    There are other things too however only in the mind’s eye at the moment. I hope this has given you a sufficient response to your question around how I am accomplishing my ministry at this time. As you see it is spontaneous in nature and mostly around filling immediate needs of those who are in need, while not being held to a slavish and unwieldly, unresponsive methodology which yields dubious outcomes. I am in no need as is anyone else to neither codify, organise or monitor nor direct my efforts. My gauge of how well I am doing is between me and God only, where it matters. Unlike the Org my left hand does not know what the right is doing. Mostly others have no knowledge either of my right or left.

    Now with regards to your comments of me having missed the main point let me say this.
    You cannot address an issue and suggest that factors such as points of disagreement and the emotional factor be removed or separated in all cases especially such as the methodology of preaching the good news. This narrows the argument to only what you think favours your point. To use an analogy it is like an abusive husband that beats his wife but wants to gloss over this fact and only focus on how hard he works to provide materially for his wife and family to prove how good a husband he is! The question here is how good a husband are you matey? Horses for courses! So the main point here is not as you say, whether only the methodology the Org uses ( going from door to door ) is practical and is eminently the preferred method for accomplishing the work. And looking at the bazillions of hours spent in this type of work.

    Preaching the good news is multi -faceted and one cannot isolate what you call disagreements and the emotional factors to arrive at a fair conclusion. You cannot isolate only certain points.
    For example, such as if the “good news” is not the truth or is a distortion, or is outright false and misleading, blasphemous and God dishonouring. Or the results are devastating to people’s spirituality and emotional constitution resulting in a loss of faith suicide or family disruptions on any level. So what are the facts?? How can you use the good news of the first century too compare with the “good news” as preached by the JWs? It is 2 different things.

    If you are merely pointing to numbers then you should also look at home visits for the purpose of kitchen ware or women’s lingerie party plans, phone canvassing, sky writing, mail-outs and war as methodologies for getting philosophies or world views disseminated. Talk to a hard line fundamentalist Arab muslin about Jihad. Have you considered these? They think it really works and is a great method too. They point to the same (KPIs) key point indicators as you have. Using your argument they are equally to be extolled!

    Thus my point about Hitler which you choose to dismiss. We, all people of all creeds and races, and whatever defines peoples as having something distinct about them all agree that what defines a person thing or organisation is what appears to be an identifier that is dominant. And people will characterise a person thing or organisation in this way. If a man beats his wife, regardless if he works hard for material things he is trash. If a person is an angry drunk all the time but feeds his dogs and has a fun hobby he is still characterised as an angry drunken person to be avoided or perhaps censured!

    Point about Hitler is exactly what you are doing in your argument. Hitler justified the end by means of the end. You are using the same circular reasoning the Org is famous for, see below.

    1. The methodology of the door to door preaching work of JWs is a success, and is the best method for preaching the good news!
    2. JWs preach the good news from door to door.
    3. The door to door preaching of the good news is the best methodology for accomplishing the preaching of the good news.

    You see you need to question the first premise, for the following premises and the conclusion to be sound and valid. Is the preaching of the good news really being preached and how are you evaluating the success, of whether the good news is really being preached? This needs to be explored. You are saying set this aside and reach my foregone conclusion!!!?>?? The only conclusion that can be reached by this way of thinking, but flawed.

    That is why you are left of centre with the isolated and narrow point of view that the methodology used by the JWs is somehow effective and possibly because they are guided by Jehovah or has some value with God.
    And just on the point of emotions. As humans we are emotional. Emotions are good. Irrational or bad emotions are to be suppressed, however good emotions such as love should be encouraged and worked on. If you take out emotions period, then this devolves for a discussion only for the animal kind who does not have the kind of emotions we have. We are humans here that are motivated and moved by emotions. How can you say exclude emotions???

    The point Eric made is a valid one. The “good news” as preached by the JWs needs to be questioned to verify if it qualifies as “good news” to begin with? Otherwise when and at what point it concludes is only a moot point is it not. Regardless of how many hours efforts good stories or whatever around what JWs do.

    And finally might I say. The good news should result in Christians who should be born again. There can be no argument here on this point. Now would you like to revise your idea around how successful the JW preaching campaign has been in making disciples of the good news???

    My conclusion, useless and actually counterproductive!

    Love to all from Alithia.

    • Reply by Gogetter on 2019-11-21 12:45:15

      Thank you for your detailed response, and some good examples of other important avenues of a Christian ministry.
      Sad the WT organization has never incorporated any of them.

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